Neeraj Chopra wins historic silver medal for India at World Athletics C'ships - Hindustan Times
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Neeraj Chopra's historic 88.13m throw gives India first-ever silver in World Athletics Championships

By, New Delhi
Jul 24, 2022 08:16 AM IST

Neeraj Chopra's throw of 88.13m in his fourth attempt secured him of not only a podium finish but also ended India's 29-year-long wait for a medal at the World's after Anju Bobby George's bronze medal finish in the women's long jump way back in 2003.

India's Neeraj Chopra won the country's only second medal at the World Athletics Championships, finishing with a historic silver in the men's javelin final. Neeraj's throw of 88.13m in his fourth attempt secured him of not only a podium finish but also ended India's 29-year-long wait for a medal at the World's after Anju Bobby George's bronze medal finish in the women's long jump way back in 2003.

Neeraj Chopra of India poses with the silver medal. (Getty)
Neeraj Chopra of India poses with the silver medal. (Getty)

Trailing outside the top three after his first three attempts, Neeraj's massive throw escalated him to the second position, only behind reigning World Champion Anderson Peters of Grenada, who took gold with a humongous throw of 90.54m. In fact, all his attempts breached the 90m-mark. Also Read: Highlights - Neeraj Chopra wins silver, Rohit Yadav finishes 10th

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Neeraj, who required only one attempt in the qualifiers to book his place in the final, was always going to be a strong medal contender, but after his first three attempts, those hopes had partially diminished. Neeraj began with a foul, and followed it with a second attempt of 82.38m. It was accompanied by a huge dream but the throw had more noise than precision. He improved on it with a decent throw of 86.37 in his third but was still outside the top three, behind Peterson, Jakub Vadlejch of Czech Republic and Germany's Julian Weber.

However, the fourth attempt is where things turned drastically for Neeraj. Chopra came running, took his position and unleashed a huge scream. With a fist pump in the air, Neeraj knew he had gotten this one right and his assessment couldn't have been more spot on. The throw had surpassed Vadlejch's best by just that much. Neeraj's fifth and sixth attempts resulted in two more fouls but it did not matter. Vadlejch's best of 88.03 secured him a bronze medal finish, followed by Weber at fourth.

Besides Neeraj, India's second participant in the event Rohit Yadav bowed out finishing 10th with a best throw of 78.62m. Rohit's first throw reached 77.96m, before he improved on it marginally by hitting the 78.05m mark. In what would turn out to be his third and final attempt, Rohit finished with his best effort of the competition but would overall be disappointed with his performance as he had had recorded a season's and personal best of 82.54m while winning a silver at the National Inter-State Championships last month.

But the toast of the nation was Neeraj as his stocks continue to rise. A year after winning a gold medal for India at the Olympics, Neeraj is now a medallist at the World's. In the two editions before this, he didn't have the best of outings. In 2017, he failed to qualify for the final and two years later, injury prevented Neeraj a shot at redemption. But entering the competition on the back of stellar form was always going to be Neeraj's best shot at a medal finish. Not too long ago, Neeraj, with a throw of 89.30m at the Paavo Nurmi games set a national record and followed it with an effort of 86.69m at the Kourtane Games.

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