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Tokyo 2020 Paralympics

Tokyo Paralympics: Started as a Wrestler, Sumit Antil wins gold in Javelin Throw

The 23-year-old won the gold medal and broke the World Record three times at the Tokyo Paralympics

Sumit Antil
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Sumit Antil (Source: Reuters)

By

Manish Sharma

Updated: 2021-08-30T19:12:47+05:30

Indian Paralympian Sumit Antil created history by winning the gold medal in Men's Javelin Throw F64 category at the Tokyo Paralympics. Sumit clinched the medal with his best throw of 68.55m coming in the fifth attempt and it would be the country's second gold at the Tokyo Paralympics after earlier in the day Avani Lekhara won the gold in shooting.

However, Sumit had initially started his career in sports as Wrestler and used to train at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) centre at Bahalgarh. All was going well for Sumit in Wrestling until a dreadful day in January 2015 changed his life forever.

One day after finishing his training, Sumit suffered from an accident while he was riding his bike. The then 17-year-old was conscious after the accident and was able to call upon an ambulance, however, after reaching the hospital the doctors broke the news that his leg needs to be amputated. Sumit was in the hospital for 53 days but it was during this time where he stumbled upon videos of South Africa's Oscar Pistorius who was one of the world's most famous para-athlete and had a double leg amputation. It was at this moment that Sumit decided to take up sports once again and become a para-athlete, as he went to Pune to get a prosthetic leg.

Sumit never looked back after that as he started his training in Javelin Throw and set his sights on competing at the Tokyo Paralympics. Before the Paralympic Games, Sumit competed at the World Championship in Dubai in 2019 and set a new World Record in his category with a throw of 62.88m.

At the Tokyo Paralympics, Sumit laid down the marker with his first attempt itself as he threw a 66.95m and broke his own World Record. He then went on to break the World Record two more times with a throw of 68.08m and 68.55m in this second and fifth attempt respectively and in the process secured India's second gold medal at the Tokyo Games.

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