In the men’s javelin throw event at the 2023 Diamond League Final in Eugene, Oregon, Neeraj Chopra of India secured second place with his best throw reaching 83.80 meters on Saturday.
Notably, Neeraj Chopra had previously made history as the first Indian to clinch a Diamond League Trophy in the previous year. However, at Hayward Field, he was unable to defend his title, as the victory in Eugene went to Jakub Vadlejch of the Czech Republic, a three-time Diamond League champion in 2016, 2017, and now in 2023, with his best throw reaching 84.24 meters.
It’s worth mentioning that none of the athletes managed to surpass the 85-meter mark during the competition. Neeraj Chopra, who holds the Indian national record at 89.94 meters, had secured a silver medal at the world championship at the same venue the previous year, achieving an 88.13-meter effort.
Reigning Olympic and world champion Neeraj Chopra initially fouled on his first attempt but rebounded with an 83.80-meter throw on his second try, securing the second spot behind Jakub Vadlejch, who started with an 84.01-meter effort.
Subsequent attempts included an 81.37-meter throw on his third try, followed by another foul from Neeraj Chopra, allowing Jakub Vadlejch to maintain the lead despite only managing one legal throw from the first four attempts.
Jakub Vadlejch, the Tokyo 2020 silver medallist, achieved his best mark of the night with his final attempt, securing his victory over Neeraj Chopra for the second time in the same year. Vadlejch had also defeated Neeraj Chopra at the Zurich Diamond League the previous month.
Finland’s Oliver Helander secured the third position with a throw of 83.74 meters.
Neeraj Chopra’s performance at the Diamond League 2023 Final in Eugene can be summarized as follows: No mark, 83.80 meters, 81.37 meters, No mark, 80.74 meters, 80.90 meters.
Two-time world champion Anderson Peters from Grenada finished in sixth place with a throw of 74.71 meters.
Leading up to the final in Eugene, Neeraj Chopra had won the Doha and Lausanne legs of the 2023 Diamond League series but had to settle for the second position in Zurich. He qualified for the Diamond League Final with 23 points from three meetings, while Jakub Vadlejch, who participated in all four qualifying events, topped the rankings with 29 points.
European Games champion Julian Weber secured the second position in the Diamond League series with 25 points but missed the final due to injury.
The Diamond League Final marked one of Neeraj Chopra’s penultimate appearances in the current season. His next challenge will be to defend his title at the Asian Games 2023, which is set to commence in Hangzhou later this month.