RETRACING INDIA’S ‘GOLEDN BOY’ NEERAJ CHOPRA JOURNEY IN ARMY

Subedar (Sub) Neeraj Chopra, Vishisht Svea Medal (VSM) created history by winning the nations’ first Gold Medal in Javelin Throw at the Olympics with a gigantic throw of 87.58m at the Tokyo Olympics 2020. This was the first Olympics medal in track and field events at Tokyo and ended India’s 121 year wait for an Olympic medal in athletics. He has joined the ranks of Abhinav Bindra and is only the second Indian to win an individual Gold at the Olympics.

Sub Neeraj, 23 yrs, was born on 24 December 1997 in a family of farmers from a small village of Khandar in Panipat, Haryana. His father Mr Satish Kumar is a farmer and mother, Mrs Saroj Devi is a housewife. He grew up alongwith two sisters. Neeraj started javelin to reduce weight as he was quite healthy and quickly took a liking for the sport. The rest is now history. He came into prominence with his performance at World U-20 Championship, Poland where he set a new Junior World Record with a throw of 86.48m. He won Asian Championship 2017 in Bhubaneswar with a throw of 85.23 mtr. Neeraj started training under the legendary Mr Uwe Hohn of Germany and won the Gold medal in Commonwealth Games 2018 with a throw of 86.47m and threw his personal best of 87.43m in the Doha leg of Diamond League 2018. He won the Asian Games with a throw of 88.06m.

Sub Neeraj was enrolled in 4 RAJPUTANA RIFLES as a Direct Entry Naib Subedar on 15 May 2016. After joining Indian Army, he was selected for training at Mission Olympics Wing and Army Sports Institute, Pune. Mission Olympics Wing, a premier initiative by Indian Army to identify and train elite sportsmen in eleven selected disciplines at five Mission Olympics Nodes to excel in various national and international competitions. Mission Olympics Wing has given two Olympic Silver medals in Shooting to the nation and is committed for many more. Sub Neeraj Chopra’s medal highlights the hard work and efforts of Mission Olympics Wing. Sub Neeraj was conferred with the Arjuna Award in 2018 and VSM in 2020 for his excellence in sports.

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