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Neeraj Chopra will kick off the Doha Diamond League season


Neeraj Chopra, the Olympic champion javelin thrower, will open his campaign in the Diamond League event in Doha on May 5 as one of the main draws in a stacked field.

After winning the season’s grand finale in September, the 25-year-old Chopra, who is currently the defending Diamond League champion, will compete alongside world champion Anderson Peters of Grenada and Olympic silver medalist Jakub Vadlejch of the Czech Republic in the first match of the 14-leg one-day series.

Chopra, who is presently undergoing training in Turkey, has a personal best jump of 89.94 meters, which he recorded while placing second in the Stockholm Diamond League competition last year. He’ll stay there through April 31.

The Indian superstar was unable to compete in the 2022 Doha Diamond League Meeting because of an injury. Peters won the competition by throwing the spear the fifth-farthest in history, at 93.07 meters. Vadlejch, who won the bronze medal at the World Championships, came in second with a throw of 90.88 meters.

Along with the illustrious trio, other athletes competing in the Doha Meeting include former Olympic champion Keshorn Walcott of Trinidad & Tobago (personal best: 90.16m), former world champion and 2016 Olympic silver medalist Julius Yego of Kenya (personal best: 92.72m), and European champion Julian Weber of Germany (PB: 89.54m), who placed fourth in the Olympics and fourth in the world.

Chopra, the first track and field athlete from India to win an Olympic gold medal, has set the gold standard for javelin throwers at 90 meters as one of his goals for this year.

I’m also coming close to the 90-meter threshold, so breaking that barrier would mean a lot to me, he added.

“While I had a successful year in 2017, setting a new personal best, winning a silver medal at the world championships, and winning the Wanda Diamond League, this year offers me new prospects. The World Championships, the Asian Games, and the defense of my Wanda Diamond League championship are my summertime objectives. After making Olympic history at the Tokyo Games in 2021, Chopra took home silver at the 2022 World Championships in the USA, while Peters took home gold. However, Chopra was unable to successfully defend his Commonwealth Games gold at the Birmingham edition last year due to an injury.

He was hurt during the World Championships, but he was able to recover in time to take first place in the Diamond League Finals in Switzerland.

I’m looking forward to beginning my 2023 Wanda Diamond League season in Doha alongside a bunch of amazing athletes, in front of a passionate audience. “I’m always overwhelmed by the warm support I receive from Indians across the world, and in Qatar that is particularly special,” the athlete said. The 2023 Diamond League consists of 14 matches, beginning on May 5 in Doha at the Qatar Sports Club and ending on September 16–17 in Eugene, Oregon, USA, with a single final.

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