Tokyo Olympics 2020: Neeraj Chopra has won GOLD in men’s javelin throw at Olympic Games. With this, he has become the first Indian athlete to win gold ever. He had entered the finals with a stunning throw of 86.65m in his opening attempt that put him on top of the qualification round on Wednesday. In the finals, he covered his highest throw of 87.58m (in the second of six attempts).In his very first attempt today, Chopra topped the list with throw of 87.03m, followed by Weber Julian (85.30) of Germany, Vadlejch Jakub (83.98) of Czech Republic, Vetter Johannes (82.52m) of Germany and Katkavets Aliaksei (82.49) of Belarus.
In the second round, Chopra bettered his first score with 87.58m — highest in the finals. However, in the third round, he finished at 76.79 m. His score in second attempts could not be achieved by competitors. Czech Republic’s Jakub Vadlejch won silver with 86.67m and Vitezslav Vesely claimed bronze with 85.44m.The big relief came for India when gold medal favourite and 2017 world champion Vetter Johannes was out of the game after the third round, with his final best 82.52m.
The only medal that India had won in track-and-field events was back in 1900 when British-Indian Norman Pritchard had won two silver medals in Paris. The International Olympic Committee still credits Norman Pritchard’s medals to India though various research, including the records of then IAAF (now World Athletics), showed that he had competed for Great Britain.
Neeraj was at the No.1 position after all athletes completed their first attempts with an 87.03m throw. The Indian bettered his performance in the second attempt with an 87.58m throw which kept him in the lead. Neeraj’s third attempt was 76.79m.
A farmer’s son from Khandra village near Panipat in Haryana who took up athletics to shed flab, Neeraj maintained his top spot when 12 athletes were trimmed to 8. The top athletes advanced to get three more attempts.
Neeraj’s fourth and fifth attempts were not up to the mark and the athlete chose to deliberately cross over the line so that the distances don’t count on both occasions. The Indian continued to be the best thrower at the end of round 5 by virtue of his monster throw in the second attempt, which turned out to be enough to give India a historic gold at the Tokyo Games.
A pre-tournament medal contender, the 23-year-old Chopra fuelled country’s expectations by topping the qualification round with a stunning first round throw of 86.59m.
Star javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra on Saturday became only the second Indian to win an individual gold in the Olympics, out-performing the field by quite a distance to notch up the first track-and-field Games medal for the country.