Neeraj Chopra today became the first Indian javelin thrower to claim a gold medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, with a season's best effort of 86.47m in the final. This is the biggest moment of his nascent career since the junior world gold, for which he set a record.
Chopra created a new U-20 world record after achieving the qualifying mark in his very first throw on Friday. The 18-year-old from Khandra village in Haryana’s Panipat district broke the old mark of 84.69 meters held by Latvian Zigismunds Sirmais by nearly two meters.
Neeraj was favourite for gold after his 85.94m throw last month at Patiala during the Federation Cup National Championships.
Chopra, who also became the first Indian athlete to set a world record at any level, bettered his previous personal best of 82.23 set at the South Asian Games earlier this year, which incidentally was the old national record.
After his world record performance, Chopra said, “When the spear left my hand on that second throw, I had a feeling that this was a special throw. I don’t think I expected it to go over 86 meters but since the last couple of months, I have worked hard on my fitness, my technique and it all paid off today.”