Olympic champion Neeraj Chopra claimed a historic silver medal at the World Athletics Championships final Sunday with a throw of 88.13m.
Grenadian Anderson Peters, the defending champion, took the gold medal with a colossal 90.54 meter effort. Olympic silver medalist Jakub Vadlejch of the Czech Republic won bronze with 88.09m.
With Neeraj’s silver medal, India has been waiting 19 years for a medal at the coming World Athletics Championships. Long jumper Anju Bobby George was the first Indian to win a bronze medal – in Paris 2003.
Chopra started with a throw-in and had 82.39m and 86.37m to finish fourth after three rounds. He got his rhythm back with a 88.13m long throw in the fourth round, the fourth attempt of his career, to jump into second place, which he held onto until the end. . His fifth and sixth throws were both fouled.
Chopra won India’s first gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. He is only the second Indian to win an individual gold medal at the Olympics, after shooter Abhinav Bindra, who won gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Meanwhile, compatriot Rohit Yadav failed to make the top 8, with a best of 78.72 after the first three throws. He’s ranked 10th.