India’s top javelin throwers, including world junior champion Neeraj Chopra, preparing for the World Championship in London in August, are set to get coaching tips from former world record holder from Germany, Uwe Hohn.
The Athletics Federation of India (AFI) confirmed the development, saying a proposal has been sent to the government for clearance. “We hope the German expert will join the national squad as early as possible,” said AFI president Adille Sumariwalla. Hohn is expected to sign the contract till the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on a monthly salary of $8,000.
The German was roped in after Australian javelin throw expert, Garry Calvert, quit his job earlier this month. The Aussie had signed a two-year contract and took over the reins in February 2016. Calvert, however, was unhappy with the functioning of the federation and quit. He has reportedly joined the Chinese athletics federation.
Sumariwalla said the federation had agreed to extent Calvert’s contract to four years after the end of 2017 season. “We were ready to make changes (to his contract) but Calvert wanted it from January. So, there was a bit of a communication gap.”
Calvert was instrumental in guiding Neeraj Chopra to a gold-winning performance of 86.48m -- a world record -- at the 2016 IAAF Under-20 World Championship in Poland. Chopra, however, wasn’t able to qualify for the Rio Olympic Games.
Hohn, 54, is currently based in Australia. He had set the world record of 104.80m in Berlin in 1984. His other great performance was a throw of 96.96 metres recorded during the 1985 IAAF World Cup in Canberra.
He missed the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games due to East German boycott. He has been a professional coach since 1999. Among the others Hohn has guided is China’s national champion and Asian record holder Zhao Qinggang. His personal best is 89.15m.
For the World Championship in August, Neeraj Chopra and Devinder Singh are the two athletes to have achieved the qualifying mark of 83m.