Salt Sparks Fly in the Great Triple Duel between Jordan Díaz and Pichardo: “We don’t get along at all”

Jordan Díaz and Pedro Pablo Pichardo. Pedro Pablo Pichardo and Jordan Díaz. The champion and the rising star in triple jump will face off next Tuesday in the grand final at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome with the European champion title at stake. Two jumping geniuses who will engage in a much tenser duel than expected after a series of messages revealed a lack of good relationship between them.

“We don’t get along at all, we never talk,” the Spaniard revealed just after leaving the floating track set up for jumps after securing a spot with a jump of 17.52m. Both of Cuban origin and naturalized by Portugal and Spain, they are — along with the Italo-Cuban Andy Díaz — the big stars of their event and it seems they will also provide moments of glory in front of the microphones. “What happened between us? Nothing happened, it’s just that he is a bit peculiar,” Díaz pointed out.

Jordan Díaz has exposed a feud that, according to him, stems from the character of the current Olympic champion and his upcoming rival: “He has his character and I have mine. If he doesn’t want to talk to me, he doesn’t have to. I have no problems with anyone.” Pichardo, 30, and the 23-year-old Spaniard are from different generations, but it seems they have a fixation on each other. When asked if this behavior could be a sign of weakness on the part of the Portuguese, Díaz once again pointed out, “Fear? Ask him.”

When the microphones are turned off and both start jumping next Tuesday, only the jumping lane and the two of them will remain in a duel that, as they warn, will be of high caliber. First, Pichardo challenged a Spanish journalist when asked if jumps of 18 meters are a thing of the past in the final stages of his career. “Wait for me on Tuesday night, and I will answer you.” Shortly after, when asked by Relevo about those words, Jordan made it clear, “If he jumps 18 meters, I will jump 18.01.”

The only thing they seem to agree on and they might be right about is that the battle for gold will be a duel between them, although Pichardo is staking his claim, “A duel between both of us? Ask the kid because I am the reigning champion.” To which, just a few minutes later at the same venue, Ivan Pedroso’s disciple in Guadalajara responded, “He is the champion and I am the newcomer who is here to take his throne.”