Neeraj Chopra, one of India’s star athletes in the contingent for Tokyo Olympics, begins his competition on Wednesday with the qualification round for men’s javelin throw.
Javelin schedule on August 4
|5:35||Men's javelin throw Qualification - Group A||Neeraj Chopra||Final on Saturday|
|7:05||Men's javelin throw Qualification - Group B||Shivpal Singh||Final on Saturday|
Chopra became a track and field star, winning the javelin gold at the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games in 2018. But he first announced his arrival just before the 2016 Rio Olympics with the world record throw in Under-20 category at the U-20 World Championships. But that effort came after the qualification time had passed and he couldn’t make the cut for the Games.
Having qualified for the Tokyo Olympics last year, he recorded a personal best of 88.07m in the Indian Grand Prix in March. But an elbow injury in 2019 and then the pandemic have robbed him of the chance to get closer to the world’s best. He has competed with the best among the field during the Kuortane Games in June though, earning bronze.
His task at Tokyo will be cut out.
Germany’s Johannes Vetter leads the current javelin rankings with a personal best of 97.76m and is widely seen as the favourite, regularly breaching the 90-meter mark.
But among the 32 athletes starting the event in Tokyo on Wednesday, competing in two groups of 16 each, only Vetter had a season best of 90m-plus. According to World Athletics, he is the only man in the world to have thrown beyond 90 metres in the last two years. In fact, he has done so 18 times – including a record streak of seven competitions between April and June this year.
Apart from Vetter, the rest of the field is fairly level and anything can happen in the field based on who hits rhythm first. Chopra is placed fourth based on Season Best efforts while London 2012 champion Keshorn Walcott is third.
“I am close to breaching the 90-metre mark and can do it if I get competition,” Chopra had said in the build up to Tokyo. “The present group of seven or eight javelin throwers across the globe is the best in history with everyone recording over 90m.”
Vetter and Chopra are in Group A together. To reach the final, qualifying performance 83.50 (Q) is needed or at least 12 best performers (q) advance to the medal round on Saturday.
Men's javelin throw start list (In order of SB)
|Name||Season Best||Personal Best||Order / Group||NOC|
|VETTER Johannes||96.29||97.76||11 A||GER|
|KRUKOWSKI Marcin||89.55||89.55||1 B||POL|
|WALCOTT Keshorn||89.12||90.16||14 B||TTO|
|CHOPRA Neeraj||88.07||88.07||15 A||IND|
|CAKSS Gatis||87.57||87.57||16 A||LAT|
|MARDARE Andrian||86.66||86.66||4 B||MDA|
|NADEEM Arshad||86.38||86.38||7 B||PAK|
|van ROOYEN Rocco||85.97||85.97||10 A||RSA|
|SHUEY Michael||85.67||85.67||5 A||USA|
|KATKAVETS Aliaksei||85.1||86.05||16 B||BLR|
|MIALESHKA Pavel||85.06||85.06||8 A||BLR|
|HUANG Shih-Feng||85.03||86.64||6 A||TPE|
|KUUSELA Toni||85.03||85.03||4 A||FIN|
|WEBER Julian||84.95||88.29||12 B||GER|
|JAINAGA Odei||84.8||84.8||15 B||ESP|
|ABDELRAHMAN Ihab||83.88||89.21||2 A||EGY|
|MATUSEVICIUS Edis||83.53||89.17||12 A||LTU|
|PETERS Anderson||83.46||87.31||10 B||GRN|
|ETELATALO Lassi||82.84||84.98||13 A||FIN|
|THOMPSON Curtis||82.78||82.88||5 B||USA|
|VESELY Vitezslav||82.63||88.34||14 A||CZE|
|KOMINAMI Takuto||82.52||82.52||3 B||JPN|
|VADLEJCH Jakub||82.31||89.73||13 B||CZE|
|SINGH Shivpal||81.63||86.23||6 B||IND|
|NOVAC Alexandru Mihaita||81.31||86.37||1 A||ROU|
|SEIFERT Bernhard||81.28||89.06||8 B||GER|
|HELANDER Oliver||80.82||88.02||2 B||FIN|
|AMB Kim||79.72||86.49||7 A||SWE|
|RIVASZ-TOTH Norbert||79.29||83.42||3 A||HUN|
|MRZYGLOD Cyprian||78.86||84.97||9 A||POL|
|YEGO Julius||75.58||92.72||11 B||KEN|
|CHENG Chao-Tsun||73.22||91.36||9 B||TPE|
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