Sumit Antil eyes both 2024 Paris Olympics and Paralympics after winning gold in Tokyo
Big dreams in his eyes, gold medallist para athlete Sumit Antil is eager to do a double show at the 2024 Paris Olympics and Paralympics.
Redefining what it means to be a pure trailblazer, Haryana's Sumit Antil delivered a golden performance at the Tokyo Paralympics that saw him breaking and creating new World Records in rapid succession as he stepped closer to the gold in the Men's F64 Javelin throw event.
Within a quick span of time, the 23-year-old para athlete broke and re-made the World Record thrice and ensured that he did just enough by launching the spear to a distance of 68.55m to get the gold medal around his neck.
Sumit, who used to be an able-bodied athlete and would participate in javelin throw events met with a mishap when he lost his left leg in a motorbike accident in 2015 and had to take a break from his favoured event, where he was always destined to shine.
At the Tokyo Paralympics, Sumit was simply sensational as he began his throw with a stunner as he smashed the World Record with a 66.95m attempt, making him race ahead in the league for gold.
Visibly elated yet full of quiet confidence, Sumit's golden triumph on his debut outing at the Tokyo Paralympics has in turn, instilled bigger dreams in the eyes of the para athlete from Haryana. "Don't be surprised to see me at Paris 2024 taking part in both Olympic and Paralympics. That's my dream," Sumit told the Paralympics website after the historic performance, as reported by News18.
Quite the feisty performer, Sumit's humble nature is all-inviting. Throughout his event, he did not look uncomfortable at any point and made the massive throws look easy as he played in the hot and humid conditions of Tokyo - looking unruffled. Having faith in his own talent, Sumit now has a greater desire after winning the gold.
"I'm confident of throwing between 75 to 80m and that should be enough to compete amongst the able-bodied athletes. I will be trying to do that for sure and then build my confidence," said the 23-year-old to the Paralympics website.
Ensuring that he did not leave any stone unturned to reap the most of his efforts, Sumit had put in the hours and according to his coach, Naval Singh, who "trained him like a commando", the gold was only long-awaited.
"During the pandemic, everything was shut and I took special permission from the Sports Authority of India to train. I prepared for all conditions - hot, wet and even trained late nights. The preparations was really good," said Antil, who is currently unemployed and is hoping that this success will also help him land a job back in India.
"Currently, I'm unemployed and doing training full time but I hope I will get a job after this. Let's see what happens when I return to India," Antil contemplated.
However, Antil need not worry about his woes as the gold medal performance has already started fetching him accolades with the Haryana government offering a prize of Rs. 6 crore and a government job for this young stunner.