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'Sometimes, it is important to enjoy'- Neeraj Chopra on Zurich Diamond League

Despite finishing second at the Zurich Diamond League, Neeraj Chopra was happy with the way he fared in the competition.

Sometimes, it is important to enjoy- Neeraj Chopra on Zurich Diamond League

Neeraj Chopra in action at the Zurich Diamond League. (source: IIS)


The Bridge Desk

Updated: 1 Sep 2023 11:28 AM GMT

It was not a usual night for Indian athletics fans as Neeraj Chopra finished second behind Jakub Vadljech in the Zurich Diamond League, days after being crowned as the World Champion.

For the first time in this season, Neeraj has finished below the first position but he remained content with his result on the day.

"I think it is important for us to enjoy the competition and know when to push ourselves. Yesterday, I was very happy for Jakub. Everybody was relaxed there," Neeraj said in a press conference after the Zurich Diamond League.

"Weber was joking with me and I was joking with Jakub. So, I am learning from them when to enjoy and when to push myself," he added further.

Important to stay injury-free before major tournaments

Amid the fun and jokes, fatigue was one of the major reasons for a subdued competition in Zurich with Jakub Valdjech winning with a throw of 85.86m and Neeraj finishing second with 85.71m. Only three throwers managed to cross the 85m mark with Julian Weber finishing third.

"Yes, Fatigue played a vital role yesterday. I guess it was important to not push myself unnecessarily. With the Diamond League final and Asian Games coming up, I want to stay healthy and injury-free," said Neeraj.

Competing in a very packed schedule, Neeraj Chopra traveled from Budapest to Zurich after winning the World Championships gold medal on Sunday night.

“It is important to understand my own body. Like yesterday, I knew that my body was not ready for the push and I obliged to it. My first three throws were weak but then I found my rhythm in the fourth throw and it was a good effort," Neeraj explained.

With two important events coming up in for of Diamond League finals and the Asian Games, Neeraj is looking to manage his body and stay focused.

“I have Eugene Diamond League before the Asian Games. There will be a lot of travel in between but my focus is on participating in both competitions and giving my best," said Neeraj.

Want to repeat all the titles

With all the major titles in his medal cabinet, Neeraj Chopra has completed Javelin Throw at the age of 25 but the Olympic champion is hungry for more and wants to repeat his past success.

“Everything is possible. My only aim is to repeat all the titles. It was a big challenge to win once but I feel it will be more challenging to repeat the feat." said Neeraj.

“It will be more pressure in the next Olympics cause now I have set expectations. But I have learned to deal with it, so I guess it will be okay," he added further.

“The main challenge is to maintain the technique. I don’t have time to improve my body or do something new," Neeraj said about how he prepares for big tournaments.

While Neeraj has been the most consistent Javelin Thrower in the world, the question of the elusive 90m mark comes up every time.

Talking about his preference for the title over distance, Neeraj said, “At times the title matters, not the distance. I am happy with the medal. As I have said before throwers don’t have a finish line. I am never happy with distance but if the title is coming, that is important for me."

With two important tournaments in sight, Neeraj Chopra will be raring to go at more accolades and defend his title at Diamond League and Asian Games.

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