Indian Grand Prix: Devender clinches World Championship berth

Devender Singh clinched an improbable spot for the World Championship with an unbelievable javelin throw of 84.57 metres at the Indian Grand Prix meet on Sunday.

Devender Singh’s previous best was 80.21 metres that he achieved during the Indian Grand Prix last year in Bengaluru.   -  H. S. Manjunath

Devender Singh clinched an improbable spot for the World Championship with an unbelievable javelin throw of 84.57 metres at the Indian Grand Prix meet at the Netaji Subhash National Institute of Sports Complex in Patiala on Sunday.

After the initial throws of 77.03 and 76.87, and a “no mark” in between, Devender came up with throws of 83.42 and 84.57, that saw him outclass the field, as briefly reported on Sunday. He wound up with 79.61.

Samarjeet Singh of Rajasthan had a best of 76.85 for the silver. The Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO) from the army, Devender became the second Indian javelin thrower to go past the qualification mark of 83 metres for the World Championship.

World junior champion Neeraj Chopra had won his ticket for London with a throw of 83.32 in the Asian Grand Prix recently.

Incidentally, Neeraj holds the world junior record of 86.48 metres that he threw for the gold in the World under-20 championship in Poland.

Devender’s previous best was 80.21 metres that he achieved during the Indian Grand Prix last year in Bengaluru.

After 10 men and four women had gained qualification berths for the World Championship to be staged in London from August 4 to 13, Devender became the 15th Indian athlete to meet the qualification standard.

Two more Grand Prix meets are scheduled to be staged at the Nehru Stadium in the Capital on May 11 and 15, as a prelude to the Federation Cup to be staged at the same venue from June 1.

The series of competition may help the Indian athletes pace themselves for the Asian Championship to be staged in Bhubaneswar from July 6 to 9.

The results

Men: Long jump: 1. Ankit Sharma 7.68; 2. M. Silambarasan 7.35; 3. Bikramjith Singh 7.33. Discus throw: 1. Kirpal Singh 56.57; 2. Baljinder Singh 56.48; 3. Prashant Malik 54.14. Javelin: 1. Devender Singh 84.57; 2. Samarjeet Singh 76.85; 3. Rajender Singh 76.30.

Women: Discus throw: 1. Parbati Sethi 43.99.

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.