Arshad Nadeem made history on Sunday, becoming the first Pakistani to win a medal for the javelin throw at the World Athletics Championship in Budapest with his best 87.82-meter throw.
Nadeem won the silver medal with a throw of 87.82m, while India’s Neeraj Chopra secured the gold with a throw of 88.17m.
In his first throw, Nadeem lagged with a reach of just 74.8m, however, his second attempt improved his score to 82.81m, with him achieving his best with his third throw of 87.82m. Prior to this third attempt, Nadeem had been ranked at sixth, but the impressive showing propelled him to second place, behind only Chopra. This position was further cemented by the throws of Germany’s Julian Weber, who was unable to exceed a best throw of 86.79m. Jakub Vadlejch of the Czech Republic, similarly, failed to exceed 87.12m.
“What a day! Tiring yet rewarding,” Nadeem wrote on X, formerly Twitter, after his win. “Like to thank Allah for this giving me the ability to go this far. This was the first time in the history of Pakistan that any Pakistani athlete won a medal at the World athletics championships,” he added.
All eyes are now on Nadeem to end Pakistan’s drought at the Olympics, with hopes high that he could secure a medal at next year’s Games in Paris. During the Tokyo Olympics, he had finished fifth. He had also finished fifth in the World Championship in the U.S. last year.
The silver medal win also follows a year of health concerns, with Nadeem being treated for an elbow and left knee surgery in London. He made his comeback to the field in May at the 34th National Games in Quetta, but was forced to skip the Asian Championship in Bangkok after his right knee got injured.