The U-20 World Athletics Championships, also famously monikered as the Junior Worlds, have become a pool of athletic talent over the years. India, especially, has found stars in the track and field who have roots in the Juniors.
From Neeraj Chopra to Hima Das, there have been a number of athletes who have announced themselves on this stage and went on to become trailblazers in Indian athletics circuit. So far, India has won nine medals which include two gold medals.
India won three medals at the U-20 World Athletics Championships 2022 which was held in Cali, Colombia. Here are the Indian athletes who have won medals in the history of the Junior Worlds:
Seema Punia (Silver)
The veteran was India's first athlete to get a podium finish at the juniors event. It was in 2002 edition when she won silver in the women's discus throw with a best attempt of 55.83m. Punia later went on to become a decorated athlete with two Asiad medals, four CWG podium finishes, and the tag of a four-time Olympian.
Navjeet Kaur Dhillon (Bronze)
Another discus thrower, Navjeet clinched a bronze at 2014 Championships which was held in Oregon, USA. 56.36m, a Personal Best distance at that time, was enough for a third place finish. Kaur went on to win bronze at the 2018 Gold Coast CWG games.
Neeraj Chopra (Gold)
Before he became India's first track-and-field athlete to win a medal at the Olympics with his Tokyo gold, an 18-year-old Chopra threw the javelin for a distance of 86.48m which made him the first from the country to win a gold at the U20 Athletics Championships. This was in the 2016 edition of the event which was held in Poland.
Hima Das (Gold)
Another 18-year-old at that time, sprinter Hima Das won India's second gold in the event's history after her heroics in the 2018 edition. She clocked an impressive 51.46s in the finals and got first place. Not only that, but she carried on the momentum and won two gold and a silver at the 2018 Asian Games!
Shaili Singh (Silver)
In the 2021 edition, long jumper Shaili Singh, of merely 17 years of age, clinched silver with a jump of 6.59m. Legendary Anju Bobby Geroge's protege, Singh certainly has the talent to fill those big shoes.
Amit Khatri (Silver)
The racewalker was another Indian medallist in the 2021 edition after he won silver in the 10000m race walk event. Khatri's timing was 42.17.94.
Mixed 4x400m Relay (Bronze)
Along with Shaili Singh and Amit Khatri, the quartet of Priya Mohan, Barath Sridhar, Summy, and Kapil clocked 3:20:60 to win the bronze medal in the 4x400m Mixed Relay event.
Mixed 4x400m Relay (Silver)
The same quartet which won bronze in the 2021 edition, except Rupal was in place of Summy, bettered their performance and clinched silver this time around in the Cali edition. They even created a new Asian record with their 3:17:76 timing.
Rupal Chaudhary (Bronze)
Another promising quarter-miler in Rupal clinched the bronze in the women's 400m event, only days after winning silver with her team in the mixed relay. She became the first Indian to win two medals in the same edition of the Junior Worlds.
Selva Prabhu (Silver)
Prabhu became the first Indian to win a medal in triple jump at the U-20 World Athletics Championships. The jumper won a silver with a distance of 16.15m which was his Personal Best as well.