A strong ground awaits Olympic javelin throw champion Neeraj Chopra at the prestigious Diamond League meet in Stockholm on June 30, which will be his biggest event ahead of the World Championships in Eugene, US, next month. Chopra, 24, will return to the Swedish capital with confidence after securing his first win of the season at the Kuorten Games in Finland on June 18, beating world champion Andersen Peters of Granada for the second time this month. The Indian superstar won a silver medal in his first event of the season with a national record throw of 89.30m at the Pavo Nurmi Games in Turku, Finland on June 14.
Chopra fell badly during his third attempt at the Cuortaine Games, but luckily he did not suffer any injuries. The conditions there were dangerous for the javelin thrower as the run-up was slippery due to rain. However, his first round throw of 86.64m was enough to get him the gold. Peters’ name is on the list of participants in Stockholm, but he did not complete all his throws, recording a best throw of 71.94m at an event in Orimtila, Finland on Wednesday.
The Grenada athlete has seen a drop in form after winning the Doha Diamond League meet with a season-leading throw of 93.07m. After that, he threw 86.60 meters for third place at the Pavo Nurmi Games and 84.75 meters at the Cuortane Games for third place.
Olympic silver medalist Jakob Vadlage of the Czech Republic and compatriot Tokyo Games bronze winner Viteslav Vesli will also be in action. This will be the first time all Tokyo Olympic medalists will be together this season.
Vadledge, who finished sixth at the Pavo Nurmi Games with a best throw of 83.91m, made a comeback from the Cuortaine Games. The same is the case with Germany’s Julian Weber, who returns to fifth place with 84.02m at the Pavo Nurmi Games.
Finland’s Oliver Hellender, who surprisingly won gold at the Pavo Nurmi Games with a big throw of 89.83m, also makes a comeback from the Kuorten Games.
Ace German Johannes Vetter, the 2017 world champion and active javelin thrower thrower over 90 meters, remains on edge with an injury. He also withdrew from the German National Championship.
Another Indian, Murali Sreeshankar, will also participate in the event but his long jump competition is not included in the Diamond League event. It is listed as an additional occurrence.
But the long jump ground is a strong one, with Tokyo Olympics gold medalist Tentoglu Miltiadis of Greece and World Indoor Championships silver winner Theobias Montler participating.
Sreeshankar is also participating in the event as part of preparations for the World Championships (July 15-24) and the Commonwealth Games (July 28-August 8).
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