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Japanese pole vaulter uses newfound ‘fame’ for good of the sport

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Japan's Hiroki Ogita competes in the Men's Pole Vault Qualifying Round during the athletics event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on August 13, 2016.
FRANCK FIFE/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
Japan's Hiroki Ogita competes in the Men's Pole Vault Qualifying Round during the athletics event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on August 13, 2016.

Story highlights

Japanese pole vaulter refutes allegations that his genitalia cost him a foul

He hopes to use the notoriety he has gained on social media to raise interest in pole vaulting

Fans world over Tweet their support for the athlete

CNN —  

The last thing a competing athlete wants to see going viral on social media are allegations that his penis thwarted his Olympic dream. But that’s what happened to Japanese pole vaulter Hiroki Ogita earlier this week.

Ogita was initially dismayed by the mockery, but has now used his notoriety to bring attention to the sport of pole vaulting.

“This is a bit tough, but in some ways this is gaining a lot of attention and I think that might be a good opportunity,” wrote Ogita in a Tweet.

“I’d really like to produce a solid result next time. Please come and see the competition at least once at the stadium. It would be great if people could see what a great sport pole vaulting is,” added Ogita.