World silver medallist Yaroslava Mahuchikh will face fellow Ukrainian Yuliya Levchenko at the Banskobystrická latka meeting – part of the World Athletics Indoor Tour – on Tuesday 2 February.
Mahuchikh, still only 19, set a world U20 indoor record of 2.02m last year and went on to win in Banska Bystrica 11 days later. The Ukrainian teenager also holds the outdoor world U20 record with the 2.04m leap she produced to take world silver in Doha in 2019.
Two years prior, Levchenko took silver at the World Championships in London, also while still a teenager. Now 23, Levchenko has a lifetime best of 2.02m and she was the only high jumper in the world who managed to defeat Mahuchikh last year.
The pair will line up in Banska Bystrica against 2014 world indoor champion Kamila Licwinko of Poland and Italian duo Elena Vallortigara and Alessia Trost, all of whom have PBs of 2.00m or higher.
The Banskobystrická latka is a World Athletics Indoor Tour Silver level meeting. Some of the Gold level meetings were unable to accommodate a men’s high jump competition – one of the scoring disciplines for this year – due to Covid restrictions, so to allow for an extra scoring opportunity, the men’s high jump contest in Banska Bystrica will count towards the scoring in the Gold series.
Italy’s 2016 world indoor champion Gianmarco ‘half shave’ Tamberi will take on 2020 world leader and European silver medallist Maksim Nedasekau of Belarus.
Tamberi, a 2.39m jumper at his best, returned from a career-threatening injury to win the 2019 European indoor title. Nedasekau, meanwhile, jumped a PB of 2.35m in 2019 and went on to finish fourth at that year’s World Championships in Doha.
Cuba’s Luis Zayas and Jamal Wilson of The Bahamas will return to Banska Bystrica after their 1-2 finish last year. Both men cleared lifetime bests of 2.33m with Zayas winning on countback.
The field also includes world indoor bronze medallist Mateusz Przybylko, 2007 world champion Donald Thomas and three-time US champion Jeron Robinson.