On his maiden appearance in IAAF’s elite Diamond League in Oslo, javelin thrower Shivpal Singh managed a lowly 8th-place, with the best attempt of 80.87m.
Considering it was his first major world event in a top-level field, which included German giants Johannes Vetter and Thomas Rohler, Shivpal fared decently.
The Asian Championship silver medallist felt he missed a golden chance to win a medal at the event as his personal best of 86.23m, achieved in Doha earlier this year, is better than what Rohler (85.27m) threw on Thursday for the top spot.
Coming into the event, I was really confident of finishing on the podium. I thought I would leave everyone behind but it turned out the other way. But I am happy with the experience I have gained.
Rubbing shoulders with the best in business boost your confidence immensely, the brawny athlete told The Indian Express.
Shivpal said a back niggle and the chilly weather were other factors that held him back. But he wasn t alone. The rest of the elite field also put up a poor show compared to the lofty standards they have set for themselves.
With Rohler bagging the gold, Estonia s Magnus Kirt (84.74)settled for the second spot as Cheng Chao-Tsun of Taiwan took home the bronze medal for 84.30m. Post competition, Shivpal returned to his current base in Poland where he s training with the other national throwers, including Davinder Kang, under Uwe Hohn.
Shivpal, who will focus on his recovery for the next few weeks, said the experience of taking part in the Diamond league was overwhelming. I have only seen some of these athletes on Youtube and now all of a sudden I was competing against them. Although I didn t give them a tough fight, I believe I wasn t very far away from them. If my back was better I was certain to bring home a medal, he said.
The Oslo event also gave Shivpal an opportunity to meet his friend and the man with Asia’s best thrower Cheng. It was Taiwan thrower who pipped Shivpal for gold in the Asian Championships in Doha. It was fun. We both were roommates here. We spoke a little about our upcoming events and then went out for a meal."