On August 7, India had a momentous occasion when 23-year-old Neeraj Chopra made history by being the first Indian athlete in the history of the Olympics to win a gold medal in the sport of athletics. His success was due to how well he did in the men’s javelin throw competition. On his second try, he threw the javelin 87.58 meters. Neeraj Chopra, a javelin prodigy and Olympic Champion, took first place in the Javelin Throw Competition at the Kuortane Games in Finland on June 18, 2022. This victory gave him his first top podium finish of this season. After his first attempt, he recorded a throw of 86.69 meters, which was good enough to earn him the gold medal, beating off Keshorn Walcott of Trinidad and Tobago and Anderson Peters, the world champion from Grenada.
Only two competitions had passed since the Olympic Games in Tokyo, where he made history by being the first Indian athlete to ever win an athletics gold medal. He got off to a good start with a throw of 86.69 meters, which was sufficient to put him ahead of his competition. Neeraj’s second and third attempts were both considered to be fouls, so he decided to opt-out of the remaining three throws and only complete three out of five throws. This meant that Neeraj won the competition with his first legal throw, which is enough to show why he has been named India’s Golden Boy.
(Click here to watch his performance video)
Neeraj Chopra broke his personal record for the javelin throw earlier this week with a throw of 89.30 meters. The brightest young star in India just broke the old record for the country at the national level. At the Paavo Nurmi Games held in Finland, he finished in second place with a throw of 89.30 meters, earning him a silver medal. His old national record was 88.07 meters, which he set the year before in Patiala.
After the triumph, LPU student Neeraj Chopra talked with a sports journalist from SAI, and this is what he said: “This was my second competition after the Olympics in Tokyo, and it went incredibly well, and I got the gold medal. My focus right now is on the upcoming competitions, all of which will be more significant than this one, as well as the Commonwealth Games, where I will be up against a lot of other athletes. I got off to a strong start here, so it has raised my confidence that I can perform better. I will take the things that I did poorly here and work to improve upon them as we move on to the more significant competition.”