Tokyo Olympics gold medallist Neeraj Chopra has said that he is hurt about not being able to defend his title at the upcoming Commonwealth Games. Earlier in the day, it was confirmed that Neeraj would be missing the upcoming event due to an injury. Neeraj issued a lengthy statement, saying that he is also disappointed on missing the opportunity of being India’s flagbearer at the opening ceremony for the event. It is important to note that Neeraj had won a gold medal at the 2018 CWG in Gold Coast.
“Hello everyone, I’m extremely disappointed to inform you all that I will not be able to represent the country at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. I had been feeling uncomfortable after the pull I felt in my groin during my fourth throw at the World Championships. On having it investigated medically yesterday by a group of doctors here in the US, a minor strain was discovered and I have been advised to undergo rehabilitation and give it rest for the next few weeks,” Neeraj said in a statement on Twitter.
“I have discussed this with my support team and the IOA, AFI, and SAI’s CAIMS, and we’ve collectively decided that keeping my long-term goals in mind, it would be best for me to skip the CWG in order to avoid risking any further aggravation of the injury. Needless to say, I am hurt about not being able to defend my title and missing out on another opportunity to represent the nation. I am especially disappointed about losing out on the opportunity to be Team India’s flag bearer at the opening ceremony, an honour I was looking forward to having in a few days’ time,” he added.
— Neeraj Chopra (@Neeraj_chopra1) July 26, 2022
Further in his statement, Neeraj said: “For now, I will focus on my rehabilitation and hope to be back in action very soon. I would like to thank the entire country for all the love and support I’ve received over the past few days, and urge you all to join me in cheering on my fellow Team India athletes in Birmingham over the coming weeks.”
Neeraj, who won a silver medal with a throw of 88.13 metres on Sunday in Oregon, sustained an injury during his performance at the World Championships and that is why he will not be able to defend his gold medal at the Commonwealth Games.
“Team India javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra had called me earlier today from the US to convey his inability to take part in the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games owing to fitness concerns. Following his participation in the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Mr. Chopra had an MRI scan done on Monday and, based on it, he has been advised a month’s rest by his medical team,” Rajeev Mehta, IOA secretary general had said in a statement.
Neeraj is also the reigning Olympic champion, having won the gold medal at last year’s Tokyo Games.
Chopra has been cherishing phenomenal results this season. The star athlete has improved his personal best twice — he recorded an 89.30m throw on June 14 at the Paavo Nurmi Games in Finland before sending his spear to 89.94m last month.