CWG 2018: Neeraj Chopra clinches gold

Carrie Guzman
April 15, 2018

The latest to do so amongst a long line of Indian names was Indian track and field athlete - Neeraj Chopra. Shooter Sanjeev Rajput set the tone early on with gold in the 50m Rife 3 Positions, and Manika Batra registered a three-peat by adding the women's singles TT gold to those she won in the women's doubles and the team event.

Neeraj Chopra became India's first javelin champion at the Commonwealth Games and joined the country's small band of athletics gold medallists with a mighty throw of 86.47m yesterday.

It was only the fifth gold medal India has won in track and field at the Commonwealth Games.

Neeraj's medal is only the fifth track-and-field gold for India at the Commonwealth Games - the other four being Milkha Singh (1958), discus thrower Krishna Poonia (2010), the women's 4x400m relay quartet of Manjeet Kaur, Sini Jose, Ashwini Akkunji and Mandeep Kaur (2010) and shot-putter Vikas Gowda (2014).

Chopra, 20, led from the front after a throw of 85.50m with his first attempt.

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Australian athlete Hamish Peacock finished second while Grenada's Anderson Peters stood third. Despite faltering in his second attempt and hitting a mark of 84.78 in his third, Chopra bettered his own score with a winning effort of 86.47 meters in his fourth.

Neeraj, a gold-medallist at the Asian Championships previous year, simply destroyed the competition with his very first attempt on Sunday that was 85.50m.

"I've been totally relaxed here, I've enjoyed myself", said Chopra, flashing the smile that had a sun-soaked Gold Coast crowd eating out of his hand. Chopra threw a distance of 82.88m at the National Institute of Sports to finish well ahead of Kasana's 80.04m that bagged him a silver while Amit Kumar took the bronze with a 77.33m throw. Medals have come regularly at the senior level too.

The Indian youngsters that have traveled to Gold Coast seemed to have only one thing in their minds this year, and that is breaking records.

At the Federation Cup in March this year, having already qualified for the Commonwealth Games, he set a new record on Indian soil of 85.94m, in what was his final attempt of the competition.

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