National record could fall early this year, predicts triple jumper Praveen Chithravel

ATHLETICS | The Indoor Asians silver medallist hopes to go over 17.40m this year

Updated - February 16, 2023 10:08 pm IST

Published - February 16, 2023 08:45 pm IST - KOCHI

Triple jumper Praveen Chithravel after his silver medal show at the recent Asian Indoor Athletics Championships in Astana, Kazakhstan.

Triple jumper Praveen Chithravel after his silver medal show at the recent Asian Indoor Athletics Championships in Astana, Kazakhstan. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

With his performance graph fluctuating wildly the last few years, triple jumper Praveen Chithravel has often left athletics aficionados confused. He could do 17m one day and fall to 15 the next.

The youngster promised much with his performances at home but often failed to deliver on the international stage.

Now, after opening his season with an impressive 16.98m for the Indoor Asians silver in Kazakhstan last week, Chithravel feels this could be a very memorable year.

“The goal is to do more than 17.40m this year. I need to jump something like 17.40 or 17.50m, that sort of process is going on and it’s going good,” said Chithravel in a chat with The Hindu from his training base at Ballari’s JSW Inspire Institute of Sport, on Thursday.

The 21-year-old will have plenty of opportunities for the big jumps this year is packed with the Asian Championships (July, Thailand), Worlds (Hungary, August) and Asian Games (September, China).

But a lot could happen before that.

“Now we have four or five jumpers over 17m, they are pushing me. There’s a good chance that one of us could break the national record on March 2 itself (at their domestic season-opening Jumps Indian Open in Ballari),” said the triple jumper from Thanjavur, who is third in the country’s all-time list (17.18m, Chennai, 2022).

Many eyebrows were raised when Ranjith Maheswary set that National record, a stunning 17.30m in July 2016 a month before his Rio Olympics flop show (16.13). But now, India has come a long way in triple jump with Eldhose Paul and Abdulla Aboobacker picking gold and silver at the last Commonwealth Games with Chithravel missing the bronze by just 4 cms.

Chithravel was surprised that he almost touched 17m at the Indoor Asians.

“I was not prepared for this competition, we are preparing for the Asians, Worlds and Asiad. We had to give our entry suddenly, just 20 days before the meet. And we (his coach, Cuba’s two-time Worlds silver medallist Yoandri Betanzos) had to change the training schedule all of a sudden. There were a lot of complications in the first two weeks but then when you think too much there could be problems, so I thought, ‘let’s just go and do it’,” said Chithravel.

“This year has been sort of telling me, ‘you can do it’.”

He had a ‘no mark’ at the last Asians final (Doha 2019) with a hamstring injury. “I was the only Indian triple jumper to qualify for the last Asians... now the Asians are coming back so I hope to do some good things,” he said.

That could steady his graph too.

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.