Sumit Antil scripted history on Monday as he broke the world record thrice to win a gold medal at the Paralympics, launching his way to the top of the podium in the men’s javelin F64 finals in Tokyo. India had won four medals in the 2016 editions while the medal count stands at seven in the ongoing event.
The 23-year-old from Sonepat in Haryana, who lost his left leg below the knee after he was involved in a motorbike accident in 2015, sent the spear to 68.55m in his fifth attempt, which was the best of the day by quite a distance and a new world record.
In fact, he bettered the previous world record of 62.88m, also set by him, three times on the day.
His last throw was a foul. His series read 66.95, 68.08, 65.27, 66.71, 68.55 and foul.
Australian Michal Burian (66.29m) and Sri Lanka”s Dulan Kodithuwakku (65.61m) took the silver and bronze respectively. The F64 category is for athletes with a leg amputation, who compete with prosthetics in a standing position.
A student of Delhi’s Ramjas College, Antil was an able-bodied wrestler before his accident which led to the amputation of his leg below the knee. A para athlete in his village initiated him to the sport in 2018.
He also competed against Olympic champion Neeraj Chopra in the able-bodied Indian Grand Prix series 3 on March 5 in Patiala.