27-year-old athlete Annu Rani is going places with her winning formula this season. Previously, she scripted history at the World Championship as she became the first Indian woman to enter the javelin throw final in Doha.
She followed it up by registering a dynamic win at the Birsa Munda Athletics Stadium. Annu attempted 6 powerful throws and got the better of her rival, Sharmila Kumari.
At the World Championships, Annu had set the national record at 62.43m. She got the better of her previous national record after outclassing a much-improved technique in a span of 7 months. Her last best shot was observed at Federation Cup in March where she went to a distance of 62.34m.
Her first throw was recorded at a distance of 56.97m, followed by a series of throws- 55.97, 58.31, 57.29 and 56.86 meters respectively, before winning the title with a 58.60m throw. Sharmila’s best effort was over 53.28m on her third throw.
“I tried to analyse my throws, tried to understand where I was going wrong and tried to improve on them. That helped me immensely,” added the Asian silver medallist after her spectacular winning effort of 58.60m, Sportstar reported.
“And I tried to learn as much as I could from the world’s top throwers. I am confident I can do the 64m to qualify for the Olympics next year, Tokyo is my big target,” she added.
The athlete was born into a farmer’s family in Bahadarpur, a village in Uttar Pradesh. She was inspired and motivated by her brother, Upendra, who had observed her upper body strength while playing a cricket game.
After performing some training and trials, Annu had picked up a long piece of bamboo and then attempted her first javelin throw. Seeing the full potential in her, her brother had paid for her entire training fee even though her father didn’t encourage girls for taking up sports.
“The girls in our village have to work a lot and then are married early. I did not want that sort of life for me, I wanted to leave the village, go out and do something big,” she said as per Scroll.in.
It took time for Annu to convince her father with her talent when she broke the national record in 2014. Her father who disapproved her for taking up sports is onw of her biggest fans.
“We know that it is really tough to bag a medal at the Championships but it’s our job to hope and pray. We are really proud of her achievement. She called me a while back and said she was feeling really good about the throw and is confident of putting up a better show in the final,” Upendra (farmer) told The Indian Express.