Javelin Thrower Neeraj Chopra has qualified for the finals of the IAAF Diamond League 2018 along with five other athletes to be held in Zurich on 30 August.

Chopra currently lies sixth in the Diamond League standings for 2018 with 12 points from three meetings. The 20-year-old’s first competition in the DL saw him finish fourth in the Doha Diamond League with a throw of 87.43 metres.

It was a throw which saw him break his 2016 national record of 86.48 metres set at the Under-20 World Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland. The next DL meeting at Eugene saw him throw an under-par 80.81 metres, finishing sixth in tricky conditions.

Rabat was the meet at which the Indian clinched his place in the DL final after throwing a 83.32 metres. Neeraj followed that up with a victory at Sotteville where he came up trumps with a throw of 85.17 metres.

The year had started well for Neeraj as he threw a 86.47 metres in winning the Commonwealth Games gold at Gold Coast.

Seasonal bests of Javelin Throwers in the DL. (Image courtesy:  www.diamondleague.com)
Seasonal bests of Javelin Throwers in the DL. (Image courtesy: www.diamondleague.com)

With only one Diamond League meeting remaining in Birmingham on 18 August 2018, Chopra cannot be overtaken in a race for the finals. With the top eight making the finals, Chopra’s 12 points can only be bested by Qatar’s Ahmed Bader, who sits seventh with 7 points.

A DL win being worth 8 points means that eighth-placed Keshorn Walcott with two points and others below him cannot surmount Neeraj’s total of 12.

The Germans Thomas Rohler and Andreas Hofmann lead the race to Birmingham with 21 and 19 points respectively. Johannes Vetter is another strong contender with 14 points from only two meets.

Estonia’s Magnus Kirt and Jakub Vadlejch, last year’s DL champion from Czech Republic, both with 15 points are also in the fray. All five men above Neeraj are expected to compete at the upcoming European Athletics Championships in Berlin.