Chopra seeks to defend Diamond League trophy

EUGENE (US), Sept 15:

A World Championships gold was the crowning glory of this season but superstar javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra has a title to defend as he takes the field against familiar rivals at the prestigious Diamond League finals here on Saturday.
The 25-year-old Chopra lifted the Diamond League champion’s trophy in Zurich last year and he would be looking to do the same again after dominating the season which saw him win his maiden World Championships title in Budapest in August.
If Chopra holds the trophy and pockets the USD 30,000 prize money at the Prefontaine Classic, he will become only the third man to defend the DL overall title, though the format changed in 2017.
The Diamond League began in 2010 but the format of having a winner-takes-all grand finale, competed among top six (top eight earlier) on the basis of accumulated points in individual legs, was introduced in 2017. Before that points of all meeting series were added with the grand finale carrying two times of that of individual legs.
Vitezslav Vesely of Czech Republic was DL champion in 2012 and 2013, while compatriot Jakub Vadlejch, who is Chopra’s current closest rival, did the same in 2016 and 2017.
Chopra, who has a personal best of 89.94m, won two individual DL meetings in Doha on May 5 and Lausanne on June 30 before clinching a historic gold in the World Championships. (PTI)

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