Devendra Jhajharia has cemented his place in the history books of Indian sport!
The 36-year-old rewrote his own historic feat as he broke the world record he had set 12 years back in Athens 2004, on his way to a second gold medal in the F46 Javelin Throw event at the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Devendra started the night as the underdog to the current world champion to Guo Chunliang, but after setting the early mark, he threw a stunning 63.97 meters in his 3rd attempt, beating his Athens mark of 62.15 meters.
Athens 2004: World record, gold medal.#Rio2016: World record, gold medal.September 13, 2016
Watch the moment he broke the world record:
Participating at the Paralympics after an agonising 12-year-wait, as his event was re-added to the games after 2004, Devendra became the first Indian to win two gold medals
Rinku, the 17-year-old making his Paralympics debut also put in a creditable showing, bettering his personal best three times. He finished fifth in the standings. Sundar Singh Gurjar, the third Indian in the fray, did not start for as yet unknown reasons.
Gold: 2Silver: 1Bronze: 1Brilliant! pic.twitter.com/ooo9ecg1hN— ScoopWhoop News (@scoopwhoopnews) September 13, 2016
Growing up in his native village in Rajasthan, Devendra was the victim of an unfortunate accident when he was eight years old. While climbing a tree he touched a live electric cable and was electrocuted, the incident resulted in amputation of the left arm.
Devendra was spotted by Dronacharya Awardee coach RD Singh in 1997 who encouraged him to take up sport full time. His moment of glory came in Athens 2004, when in his first Paralaympic Games, where he went on to set a new world record with a distance of 62.15m, eclipsing the old mark of 59.77m.
Accolades followed, as he won the Arjuna Award (2005) and Padma Shri awards (2012). Having recently won a silver medal at the 2015 World Championship in Doha & at the 2014 Asian Para Games in Incheon, Devendra was one of India’s biggest medal prospects at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio.