Medal hope for India at the 2017 World Athletics Championship?
The 2017 World Athletics Championship, taking place in London this year, has had quite a few notable events up until now. Usain Bolt, the fastest man on Earth with about 19 Gold medals under his belt ran his last race in this championship, and although he could only manage a Bronze medal, it was still a grand farewell. Justin Gatlin, the athlete who won this race, bowed down in front of Bolt and gave the legend a fitting goodbye. In addition, the 34-year-old British sprinter Mo Farah won his third Gold medal in the 5000m run after almost falling in his final lap. Amongst all these athletes, how have the Indians fared? Have they proven to be at par with the best athletes and are there any medal hopes for us?
Promising Indian Players at the 2017 World Athletics Championship
Neeraj Chopra and Davinder Singh
So far, India’s performance hasn’t exactly been inspiring, but we still have hopes from some very promising players. Here is a list of people who have performed subliminally well at the national levels back home:
This 19-year-old javelin thrower has the entire nation’s hopes riding on him. He has been a revelation at the national levels and if he could replicate his performance at the world level, he could certainly bring a medal back home. He will be facing the world’s best javelin throwers at this level, including Germans Johannes Vetter and Thomas Rohler, along with Kenyan Julius Yego.
Another Indian contending in Javelin throw is Davinder Singh, who is a National championship and has a personal best of 84.57m, recorded in the opening leg of the Indian Grand Prix in Patiala on May 7.
Hard as it may seem to beat these throwers, history stands on this youngster’s side. At the international and Olympic level, funny things often happen and young players often find it in themselves to win big. A great example of this is 19-year-old Trinidadian Keshorn Walcott winning a Gold at the 2012 London Olympics.
The 4 x 400 m relay team
Although the relay team of India crashed out of the Rio Olympics very early, it has gone through a paradigm shift since then. They have a new coach, Russian-born American Galina Bukharina. Bukharina coached the Russian mile relay team in Seoul 1988 Olympics where they won the gold medal, and she feels that this team has what it takes to reach the final stages. Moreover, after winning the Asian gold in Bhubaneswar, the Indian girls have had quite a lot of time to practice and work out strategies in London.
History has shown that at the World stages, peculiar things happen; veterans suddenly go through a dry spell or under-performing teams and athletes suddenly find it in themselves to fight and win. India has entered this tournament as an underdog, and here’s to hoping that our David will beat their Goliath.