Neeraj Chopra, Tokyo Olympics men’s javelin champion and Commonwealth Games 2018 gold medallist, said in a statement on his social media that he is extremely disappointed in not being able to defend his title at Birmingham.

He added that he was also hurt at missing the chance to be India’s flagbearer at the opening ceremony.

CWG 2022, Athletics: Neeraj Chopra, defending javelin champion, ruled out due to groin strain

In a statement on social media, Neeraj explained that he experienced a pull in his groin during his silver medal-winning performance at the World Athletics Championships. Tests revealed that he had a minor strain and he was advised to rest and undergo rehabilitation to avoid aggravating the injury.

Here’s the full text of Neeraj Chopra’s statement:

Hello everyone,

I’m extremely disappointed to inform you all that I will not be able to represent the country at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

I had been feeling uncomfortable after the pull I felt in my groin during my fourth throw at the World Championships. On having it investigated medically yesterday by a group of doctors here in the US, a minor strain was discovered and I have been advised to undergo rehabilitation and give it rest for the next few weeks.

I have discussed this with my support team and the 10A, AFI and SAI’s CAIMS, and we’ve collectively decided that keeping my long-term goals in mind, it would be best for me to skip the CWG in order to avoid risking any further aggravation of the injury.

Needless to say, I am hurt about not being able to defend my title and missing out on another opportunity to represent the nation. I am especially disappointed about losing out on the opportunity to be Team India’s flag bearer at the opening ceremony, an honour I was looking forward to having in a few day’s time.

For now, I will focus on my rehabilitation and hope to be back in action very soon. I would like to thank the entire country for all the love and support I’ve received over the past few days, and urge you all to join me in cheering on my fellow Team India athletes in Birmingham over the coming weeks.

Jai Hind