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World Athletics Championship: Davinder Kang defies odds, first Indian to enter finals


London: Davinder Singh Kang became the first Indian to qualify for the final round of the javelin throw in the World Championships with a terrific display with his third attempt, just about managing to go past the qualifying mark on Thursday in London.

Kang, who was carrying a shoulder injury, cleared the automatic qualification mark of 83 metres in his third and final throw as he sent the iron spear to a distance of 84.22 metres. He recorded an 82.22-metre throw in his opening attempt and then came up with 82.14-metre in his second.

“After I came to know that Neeraj did not qualify (for the final round), I wanted to qualify for the final round. I wanted to do something for the country; I wanted to do something which no Indian has done before. By the grace of God, I did,” Kang said after his race.

“I have been carrying a right shoulder injury which I sustained in May during the Indian Grand Prix but it is not that a big problem. Our team masseur put these straps today and I am OK. But, I had to ask my friend Sri Lankan competitor [Waruna Rankoth Pedige] to do some stretching before my third and final throw,” he said, while displaying his right shoulder injury.

“It (injury) will be all right after tomorrow’s rest. I want to give my best in the final round on August 12 and win a medal for the country,” he added.

Kang was tested positive for marijuana in June but was named in the 25-member Indian team as the banned substance was in the specified list of the WADA Code and does not attract automatic suspension.


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