Published By: Ritayan Basu
Last Updated: September 15, 2023, 18:31 IST
For the first time in history, three athletes from India have secured their places in the Diamond League finals. Eyes will be on ace javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra, who has recently triumphed at the World Athletics Championships. The other two Indians to feature in the Diamond League finals are long-jumper Murali Sreeshankar and 3000m steeplechase specialist Avinash Sable. All events at the 2023 Diamond League finals are slated to be hosted at Hayward Field in Eugene, USA, on September 16 and 17.
The Diamond League comprises 14 meetings which take place across different countries from May to September every year. A total of 16 events are part of the competition. Athletes are awarded points based on their performance in each meeting and the final standings are considered to decide on the finalists.
As per the tournament’s official website, the top six athletes in the track and field events, the top eight for 100m-800m races and the top ten for the 1500m and other long-distance events will find their place in the Diamond League finals.
Let’s take a look at the Indian athletes’ journey till the 2023 Diamond League finals:
Neeraj Chopra is unquestionably the finest javelin thrower that India has ever produced. The Olympic Gold medalist prevailed in the Doha and Lausanne legs of the Diamond League before winning a silver in Zurich to book his ticket to the finals. As per the overall points, Chopra (23 points) occupies the third spot in the Diamond League standings, following Jakub Vadlejch (29 points) and Julian Weber (25 points).
A Commonwealth Games silver medalist, long jumper Sreeshankar made his Diamond League debut this year and has managed to reach the finals in his very first appearance. He finished third at the Paris leg, third in Lausanne and in Zurich. Despite skipping the Oslo meeting, Sreeshankar finished third in the long jump standings with 14 points, only behind world champion Miltiadis Tentoglou and Swiss star Simon Ehammer.
Avinash Sable rose to fame after bagging a silver medal at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games last year. He competed in three of the six Diamond League meetings where the 3000m steeplechase event was part of the roster. Sable finished fifth at the Stockholm leg, sixth in Silesia and fifth in Xiament to earn a total of 11 points. He has secured the sixth position in the final Diamond League rankings.