Duplantis is expected to compete in Berlin next week / © AFP
Sweden's Olympic champion pole vaulter Armand Duplantis said he "feels close" to setting a new world record after opening his 2023 season with a convincing win on home soil on Thursday.
The 23-year-old was only thwarted by his own world record at the Mondo Classic indoor meeting in Uppsala, failing to clear 6.22 metres and settling for a highest jump of 6.10 metres.
"Mondo" Duplantis set a new world record of 6.21 metres last year but was unable to better it despite the fervent backing of more than 2,000 spectators, failing to complete his jump three times when going for 6.22 metres.
Asked about achieving that height, he told Swedish broadcaster SVT: "I feel close, I can do it, 100 percent. But it's not so simple, I need to do a little better on the approaches."
Duplantis said he was "proud" of clearing 6.10 metres, adding: "I feel good. It was the first competition of the season, there are obviously small things I have to fix."
American KC Lightfoot took second place with a jump of 5.91 metres at the second attempt, while Ernest Obiena of the Philippines came third with the same height achieved after three jumps.
Duplantis is expected to compete in Berlin next week and at two further meetings in France this month but has not confirmed whether he will defend his title at the European Athletics Indoor Championships in Istanbul in March.
He was voted World Athlete of the year in 2022 after winning the world indoor title in Belgrade and claiming gold at the World Athletics Championships in the United States, breaking his own world record each time.
The US-Swede has held the pole vault world record since February 2020 and has since improved it four times, becoming a poster boy of world athletics.