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Katrina Kaif a Big Fan of India's Tokyo Olympics Hopeful, Neeraj Chopra?

He was paralysed after only a few days of practice in Turkey and had to return home.

He was paralysed after only a few days of practice in Turkey and had to return home.

Neeraj Chopra, One of India's brightest prospects for a medal in Athletics at the Tokyo Olympics, has several Bollywood actresses floored.

Broad shoulders, a sculpted body, long hair, walking tall – Neeraj Chopra, India’s biggest medal hope at the Tokyo Olympics, is an athlete that has left several Bollywood actresses smitten. Katrina Kaif is reportedly his biggest fan and as per Abhishek Bachchan, two other actresses are also rooting for the handsome hunk.

Away from all the distractions, Neeraj is focused on his javelin. Back in 2016, Neeraj Chopra set a world record when he bagged a gold medal in javelin throw at the Under-20 World Championships. He has not looked back since and he has gone from strength to strength and in the last few years, Neeraj has bagged gold at the Asian and Commonwealth Games and won the Olympics berth when he threw a 7.8-meter javelin in South Africa.

It has not been an entirely smooth ride for Neeraj. He was paralysed after only a few days of practice in Turkey and had to return home. He is now fourth in the world rankings. He took part in as many as three competitions before heading to Tokyo. He goes into the games after having finished third in the Kuortan Games in Finland.

Neeraj will face stiff competition from Johannes Vetter of Germany who comes in as the hot favourite to clinch gold. He is unbeaten in as many seven events between last April and June and has been superb in all competitions which will make Neeraj’s passage rather difficult.

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Ahead of their duel, Vetter has already said that it would be difficult to beat him in the competition, a challenge that Neeraj seems to have accepted and it would be interesting to see how he fares when the competition actually starts. Neeraj is one of India’s leading medal hopes at the games and how he carries and performs with this pressure will determine his performance.

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first published:July 31, 2021, 11:36 IST