India’s Neeraj Chopra, the reigning Olympic champion, qualified for the final of the men’s javelin throw at the World Athletics Championships with his first throw of 88.39m at the Hayward Field, Eugene, Oregon on Friday.
Chopra, who has a season-best of 89.94m – a new national record set in Stockholm in June earlier this year, made short work of the qualification mark with his very first throw.
Joining Chopra is India’s Rohit Yadav with the best throw of 80.42m placing him 12 among qualifiers. It was further good news for India as triple-jumper Eldhose Pual qualified for the final in his event with the best jump of 16.68m.
Praveen Chithravel and Abdulla Aboobacker missed out on qualification finishing 17th and 19th, respectively.
Defending champion, Grenera’s Anderson Peters topped the qualifying charts in men’s javelin with a throw of 89.91m while Chopra’s effort puts him as the second best qualifier. Germany’s Julian Webber (87.28m) and Czech Republic’s Jakub Vadlejch (85.23m), the Tokyo Games silver medallist, were the other two automatic qualifiers.
In the triple jump, Tokyo Olympics gold medallist Pedro Pichardo topped qualification with a leap of 17.16m, followed by Burkino Faso’s Hugues Fabrice Zango (17.15m) and Emanuel Ihemeje (17.13m) of Italy
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Meanwhile, India’s national record holder Annu Rani will be in action in the women’s javelin throw final tomorrow, after she finishing 5th in her group (B) qualifiers with the best throw of 59.60m. Overall Rani qualified 8th with Japan’s Haruka Kitaguchi topping the qualification with a season-best throw of 64.32m, followed by Shiying Liu of China (63.86m) and Liveta Jasiunaite of Lithuania (63.80m).
The top 12 throwers will qualify for the final slated for July 24.
Defending champion Anderson Peters of Grenada and another Indian, Rohit Yadav will compete in Group B.
Chopra, who has a personal best of 89.94m, had competed in the 2017 London World Championships with the hope of at least making it to the finals
but managed only 82.26m to fall short of the automatic qualification mark of 83m.
He had also missed the 2019 World Championships in Doha as he was recovering from elbow surgery.