Neeraj Chopra set to face Johannes Vetter this week — Is this a trailer before the Olympics?
A look at what the upcoming Kuortane Games has to offer for Neeraj Chopra in terms of competition and performance enhancement.
The build-up to Neeraj Chopra's quest for an Olympic medal is intense. In the latest provisional list that has been released for Kuortane Games, Johannes Vetter has also been included as a competitor in the World Athletics Continental Tour Bronze event. This is the first and probably final time that both of them will face each other in the competition that is set to begin on 26th June. We take a brief look at what this means for two of the top contenders who will face off a month before they head to Tokyo.
Johannes Vetter is a German javelin thrower and has previously won the gold medal at the World Championships in 2017. As of 22nd June 2021, he is the World No 1 in the Men's category with a score of 1405.
Since making his international debut in 2011, Johannes Vetter has gone from averaging throws of 50m to a consistent score average above 88m. His personal best going into the Kuortane Games meet is 97.76 meters which are approximately 9 meters ahead of Neeraj Chopra.
His previous finish at the 2016 Olympics was 4th when he threw a total of 85.32m and missed out on a bronze by just 6 cms. He is the top contender to win this event and will be using this as an opportunity to gauge where he stands amongst other javelin throwers.
The past few years have been rocky for the youngster from Haryana. However, he has recovered phenomenally from an injury and has come back to qualify for the Olympics and make a strong case for a place on the podium. Neeraj has a season and personal best of 88.07 meters which puts him higher up in the list of competitors vying for a good show at this event.
His upward trajectory of going from 82m to 87m in the past 2 years has helped him immensely. A change in the kind of javelin he uses along with adequate coaching and care has brought him out of his injury into the contention for a medal. The aim however would be to breach the 90m mark that will set him on a good course both physically and mentally prior to the Olympics. Moreover, this will be a great opportunity for him to put into practice all that he has done over the past year since lockdown began. It will be a chance to test himself and work on what he can improve upon within a month's time.