Recovering from a muscle strain he had sustained last month, superstar Indian javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra has pulled out of the prestigious Paavo Nurmi Games to be held on June 13 at Turku in Finland. (More Sports News)
Event organisers said that the Olympic champion Indian has informed them about the "cancellation" of his participation in the World Athletics Continental Tour gold level event due to "health" issues.
"Javelin Olympic champion Neeraj Chopra cancelled his participation in the Paavo Nurmi Games. Chopra's manager messaged the competition organisers that the athlete has health problems, which is why the (his) competition had to be cancelled," said a statement on the website of the Finnish Athletics Federation.
"Of course, peak cancellations are always upsetting. At the moment, there seem to be quite a few 90m javelin throwers from recent years injured. Chopra's second-best result of all time is from Turku last summer and he was certainly looking forward to the competition at least as much as we were," said Jari Salonen, CEO of PN Turku Oy, which organises the Paavo Nurmi Games.
On May 29, Chopra issued a statement that he suffered a muscle strain during training and was pulling out of the FBK Games (June 4) at Hengelo in the Netherlands as a precautionary measure.
"Recently, I sustained a muscle strain during my training. Following a medical evaluation, me and my team have decided to avoid any risks which can aggravate the injury," the world No. 1 had said on Twitter.
"Unfortunately, it means that I have to withdraw from the FBK Games. Injuries are part of the journey, but it's never easy. I am on the road to recovery, and will aim to be back on the track in June."
The 25-year-old had enjoyed a perfect start to the season by winning the Doha Diamond League on May 5 with a throw of 88.67m.
It is not yet clear when Chopra will return to action, though there is more than two months before the World Championships (August 19-27) in Budapest, Hungary, which is the major event this year, along with the Diamond League Finals and the Asian Games.
Last month, the sports ministry, while clearing Chopra's training proposal in Finland, had said that he will take part in multiple World Athletics gold level events in June by basing at Kuortane Olympic Training Centre in that country during this time.