India’s celebrated javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra and wrestler Vinesh Phogat will leave for the Tokyo Olympics from their respective locations in Europe (where they are currently training for the mega-event).
India’s Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) met on Friday and allowed the athletes to concentrate on practice at their preferred locations until July 25 before leaving for Tokyo to participate in the quadrennial games.
Neeraj Chopra will commence his Tokyo Olympics training at Uppsala in Sweden on June 21 along with his coach Dr. Klaus Bartonietz. The ace javelin thrower is currently in Portugal and will compete in Meeting Madrid on June 19 before participating in the Karlstad GP and the Kuortane Games in Finland.
Read: Tokyo Olympics: Can Neeraj Chopra make history?
Neeraj Chopra qualified for the Tokyo Olympics in January 2020 after throwing the spear 87.86m, in an athletics meet in Potchefstroom, South Africa. It was a significant effort since it bettered the Tokyo Olympics 2020 cut-off mark by more than two meters.
The javelin thrower is one of many medal contenders for India. On the back of multiple impressive performances, Neeraj Chopra became the third-best javelin thrower in the world in 2021. In the limited competition he has had this year, the javelin thrower has looked in fine nick.
Vinesh Phogat to train in Estonia, Hungary ahead of Tokyo Olympics 2020
Wrestler Vinesh Phogat has already been based out of Europe since April. She will practice at a 10-day training camp in Tallinn, Estonia followed by a 16-day camp in Budapest, Hungary. Vinesh Phogat will have the services of coach Woller Akos and physiotherapist Poornima Raman at her disposal.
Vinesh Phogat is the top seed in the 53kg category at the Tokyo Olympics after beating Ukraine’s Khrystyna Bereza 8-0 in the Poland Open Ranking Series.
Also read: Can Vinesh Phogat bring home the coveted Olympic gold?
The wrestler is in top form, adding three gold medals to her kitty in 2021. Before winning the Poland Open gold, Vinesh Phogat won the gold medal at the Matteo Pellicone Rome Ranking Series in March and at the Asian Championship in April.
After an injury sent her out of the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in 2016, Vinesh Phogat is the one to watch out for at the Tokyo Olympics 2020.
Wrestler Bajrang Punia has also received approval to use a second sparring partner. Punia, who competes in the 65kg category, will have the 70kg category’s U-23 World Champion Mirza Skhulukhia as his second sparring partner. The duo will train in Vladikavkaz, Russia.
Also read: Tokyo Olympics: Can Atanu Das and Deepika Kumari win medals for India?
Bajrang Punia is already sparring with 70kg category 2019 World Champion David Baev.