Athletics

Neeraj Chopra doubtful for Worlds

Neeraj Chopra

Neeraj Chopra   | Photo Credit: BiswaranjanRout

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Coach Bahadur says he should concentrate on Olympics

The ‘elbow strain’ that forced javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games champion, to skip the recent Asian championships is likely to keep him out of this September’s World championships too.

A fit Neeraj, the World No. 5 and India’s best athlete, would have been the country’s brightest hope for a medal at the Doha Worlds but now, it looks like his injury is more serious than what one thought.

“I don’t think he will take part in the Worlds. There is no question of taking a risk, my opinion is that he should only concentrate on next year’s Tokyo Olympics. We should not be in a hurry,” Bahadur Singh, the chief National coach, told The Hindu from Patiala on Tuesday evening.

“Neeraj will take time to recover. He has gone to Mumbai to consult medical experts. Then we will know exactly how much time he will need to recover or whether he will need a surgery.”

Meanwhile, the Diamond League season opens in Doha on Friday and despite the Indians’ impressive showing in last year’s Asian Games and three gold medals at the recent Doha Asians, no Indian will figure in the premier meet.

Toor’s case

The Athletics Federation of India could have tried to get Tajinder Pal Singh Toor, who broke the Asian Games shot put record (20.75m) while winning the gold in Jakarta and who won the Asian gold recently with 20.22m, a Diamond League berth.

Kuwait’s Meshari Saad, who has a personal best of 19.54m and who was seventh at the Asians with 18.62m, has been offered a berth in the Doha Diamond League.

“I don’t think he is mentally prepared for the Diamond League now. We will try to do something for him when shot put comes next in the Diamond League,” said the chief coach.

The Diamond League is an ‘only by invite’ event and entry is at the discretion of the elite athlete coordinator of the respective event but it is time a sincere effort is made to get berths for Indian athletes in such event that will do a lot of good for their world rankings and also for their Olympic qualification chances.

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Printable version | Jan 21, 2020 10:17:51 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/athletics/neeraj-chopra-doubtful-for-worlds/article26996165.ece

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