Annu Rani at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon.© AFP
A last attempt throw of 59.60m, though well below her season’s best, ensured javelin thrower Annu Rani qualify for her second consecutive finals in the World Championships in Eugene, Oregon. Annu was on the verge of ending her campaign after starting with a foul throw and 55.35m in her second try but sent her spear to 40cm short of 60m in her third and final attempt on the fifth day of competitions in Eugene. She finished fifth in the Group B qualification round and made it to the finals as eighth best across the two groups.
The 29-year-old national record holder must, however, be disappointed as she failed to touch the 60m mark but she now has the chance to make amends in the finals on Saturday (6:50am IST). She has a season’s and personal best of 63.82m.
Those who touched the 62.50m mark or the 12 best performers across the two groups made it to the finals. Only three competitors could get past the automatic qualification mark of 62.50m.
Season leader Maggie Malone of USA failed to make it to the finals after finishing 12th in Group B and 22nd overall with a best throw of 54.19m while defending champion Kelsey-Lee Barber of Australia made it to the medal round as fifth best performer with a best effort of 61.27m.
Annu has qualified for her second consecutive World Championships finals in her third appearance in the showpiece. She had finished eighth in the finals with a best throw of 61.12m in the last edition in 2019 in Doha. She could not qualify for the finals in 2017 in London after finishing 10th in her qualification group.
She had broken her own national record with a throw of 63.82m while winning gold during the Indian Open Javelin Throw Competition in May in Jamshedpur.
In women’s 5000m, Parul Chaudhary failed to make it to the semifinals after finishing 17th in heat number 2 and 31st overall with a time of 15:54.03. The 27-year-old has a season’s best of 15:39.77 and personal best of 15:36.03.
Olympic champion Neeraj Chopra will compete in the qualification round Group A of men’s javelin throw on Friday (5:35am IST). Tokyo Games silver medallist Jakub Jakub Vadlejch of Czech Republic and 2012 London Olympics gold winner Keshorn Walcott of Trinidad and Tobago will be in his group.
Defending champion Anderson Peters of Grenada will compete in the qualification Group B. The final will be held on Sunday.
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