Sumit Antil won the javelin (F64) gold medal at the Tokyo Paralympics with a best throw of 68.55m.© Twitter
Indian javelin thrower Sumit Antil was on a world record-breaking spree on Monday as he won the gold medal at the Tokyo Paralympics with a best attempt of 68.55m in the final. Sumit broke the world record thrice en route to his gold medal. After his historic performance, the 23-year-old, during an interview with The Times of India, said he wanted to join the Indian army but his dream was shattered when he lost his left leg in an accident.
The world record holder in javelin (F64) said that he had rejected many government job offers to pursue his dream of serving in the army.
“If I had my left leg, I would have been a wrestler. I wanted to join the Indian Army through the sports quota. I rejected many government jobs because of this. But the accident shattered my dreams of joining the Indian Army,” Sumit was quoted as saying by The Times of India.
Sumit also spoke about the support which he received from Neeraj Chopra — India’s only Olympic gold medallist in athletics.
“Thank you to him (Neeraj) for inspiring me. I still remember those encouraging words. Neeraj said you have the ability to do well and he was confident that I will win a medal in Tokyo. He said bhai tu pakka medal leke ayega, dekh lio (Brother, you will surely win a medal),” he added.
On Monday, Sumit set the pace in the men’s javelin (F64) final as he broke the world record with his very first throw of 66.95m.
He bettered his own effort with his next attempt with a throw of 68.08m. Sumit was all but assured of a gold, however, the Indian athlete had one more world record smashing throw left in him as his fifth attempt saw him achieve a distance of 68.55m.
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