By our correspondent
LAHORE: Pakistan’s premier javelin thrower Arshad Nadeem on Friday shrugged off his rustiness with a stunning throw which helped him not only to make it to the final of the World Athletics Championship but the feat also catapulted him into the 2024 Paris Olympics.
In the World Championship qualification stage in Budapest, Hungary, Arshad did a fine job when he engineered a super 86.79 metre throw in his third attempt to top Group B. This was his career third best throw. Before this he had managed 90.18 metre throw in his record-breaking feat in the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham last year. And days after he pulled off 88.55 metre throw in the Islamic Games in Turkey which also earned him gold.
Arshad started his qualification journey with a 70.63 metre throw. He looked a bit under pressure when he was coming for the second throw. He lost his run up and went back to his mark. He rejuvenated himself in hot conditions. He came up with a fine effort by managing a throw of 81.53 metre. And his third throw was exquisite. His run up and body combination seemed extremely fine. He landed perfectly, managed a decent release which enabled him to achieve a throw of 86.79 metre.
For Olympics qualification he needed to manage 85.50 metre throw. It would be the second time that Arshad would be featuring in the Olympics.
He had finished fifth in the Tokyo Olympics.
“This is his first competition in a year and he was rusty. The temperature for Group B competition was high as compared to the Group A which affected his performance,” Arshad’s coach Salman Butt told this correspondentfrom Budapest.
Butt was also happy with his superb third throw.
“It was great,” Butt said.
The final will be held on Sunday (tomorrow).
The others who qualified for the finals from Group B include Jakub Vadlejch of Czech Republic (83.50 metre), Edis Matusevicious of Lithuania (82.36 metre), Ihab AbdelRahman of Egypt (80.75 metre), Kishore Jena of India (80.55 metre), Timothy Herman of Belgium (80.11 metre) and Andrian Mardare of Moldova (79.78 metre).
Olympic champion and world silver medallist Neeraj Chopra of India topped Group A with a massive throw of 88.77 metre. Julian Weber of Germany (82.39m), DP Manu of India (81.31m) and Dawid Wegner of Poland (81.25m) were the others who qualified for the final from Group A. As many as 12 athletes had to make it to the final.
Two-time world champion Anderson Peters from Granada flopped and was exited after he could manage only 78.49m throw.
This is the first time that India’s three javelin throwers have qualified for the final of the global event.
By our correspondent