Birmingham: Pakistan’s Arshad Nadeem on Sunday became the first javelin thrower from the sub-continent to cross the 90 metre mark to win the gold medal at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games here.
Nadeem, who is in a regular battle with India’s Tokyo Olympics gold medallist Neeraj Chopra and at times even uses his javelin during competitions, won the bragging rights with the Indian as he became the first to cross the 90-metre mark.
On Sunday at the Alexander Stadium here, Nadeem came up with a massive personal best of 90.18m for a Games Record in his fifth throw, jumping to the top of the standings and setting himself up for a medal.
World Champion Anderson Peters of Grenada was placed second with a best throw of 88.64 metres. It was also a record of sorts, the furthest-ever second place throw in the history of the Commonwealth Games.
Kenya’s Julius Yego threw out of his skin to get a season’s best of 85.70m and take the bronze medal.
In Chopra’s absence, India’s D.P. Manu finished fifth with a best throw of 82.28 while Rohit Yadav was placed sixth with an effort of 82.22 metres.
With his effort on Sunday, Nadeem beat Neeraj Chopra’s Tokyo Olympic throw of 87.58m, which had fetched the Indian a gold medal, and the World Athletics Championship throw of 88.13m. Nadeem had finished behind Chopra in both these events.
Besides being rivals on the field, both Nadeem and Chopra are good friends, encouraging and praising each other for their performances. Their bromance is a matter of discussion on the social media circles of both the neighbours. Now with Nadam going past Chopra, it sure will spice up the rivalry as Chopra has always aimed to cross the 90m mark.