A day after breaking his own world record, the two-time Paralympic medalist, the javelin thrower Devendra Jajaria, aimed 68 meters at the Tokyo Games, confident he could break the world mark again.
The first Indian athlete to win two individual gold medals at an Olympic or Paralympic event, Jahariya booked his Paralympic seat in Tokyo in the men’s F-46 style, sending the replica to a record distance of 65.71m during the test here on Wednesday.
With these efforts, he improved his own world record of 63.97 m, set at the Rio Games in 2016.
“My goal is 67-68 meters for the Paralympic Games. I feel really good. I also broke the world record in the process just before the Paralympic Games. I am quite confident and I know I will break the Paralympic World record again,” Dzhajharia told PTI in Thursday.
India’s greatest Paralympian, who won gold at the 2004 and 2016 Games – both with world record throws – said he had worked to increase strength in his shoulder.
“I have increased my shoulder exercises. You need to do special rehabilitation for the shoulder, my flexibility is good, but I worked to improve strength.”
The 40-year-old said he had proven that “age is just a number” with his recent feat, adding that it was more important for an athlete to be mentally strong.
“I don’t think much about it. Now that I’ve broken the world record of 40 plus years, I’ve proved that age doesn’t matter. With age, training needs to change, you can’t train like when you were 17-18 years, but then you have experience, it helps.
“My coach, fitness trainer and physiotherapist have worked hard on me, my family has set me free because I train at the Gandinagar coaching camp. I think you have to be mentally stronger than physically fit.
“I was mentally fit for this race. I improved the record to almost 1.75m, which is a lot,” he added.
Arriving from a small village in the Churu district of Rajasthan, Jajara, he was about eight years old when he had to have his left arm amputated as soon as he accidentally touched a live electrical cable woven into a branch of a tree he had climbed.
He falls into the F-46 category, which means athletes who have a single below or above elbow amputation.
Warned by his coach not to gain weight during a blockade caused by COVID-19, Jhajharia, who was in his village, grabbed everything and everything, including car tires and petrol bottles, to train.
“I was in my village during the lock and there was no facility, I trained in one room, but I feel that I learned a lot from this experience, how to keep fit even then.
“My coach had told me that I could not put any weight on the lock, if it increased, you would not be able to perform. I did basic exercises. I had no equipment, so I used car wheels, a gas cylinder, a bicycle tube, etc. .
Steam sports were a turning point in 2019. Steam athletes in the country broke records and presented an unprecedented medal at world championships.
Jahariya is confident that the momentum in Tokyo will continue. He predicts a withdrawal of 15 medals.
“I am convinced that the country’s steam athletes will do well in Tokyo. I expect 15 medals. The javelin throwers are doing well, five of our high jumpers are doing well in different categories, the badminton team is also very good,” he said. he.