Tokyo Paralympics: Nishad Kumar soars to silver in high jump, Vinod Kumar wins bronze in discus

Both the Indian athletes set Asian records en route to their medal wins at the Tokyo 2020 Para Games.

By Naveen Peter
Picture by Paralympic Committee of India

India’s track and field athletes Nishad Kumar and Vinod Kumar added two more medals to the nation’s kitty at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics on Sunday.

At the Olympic stadium, Nishad Kumar won a silver medal in men’s high jump - T47 while Vinod Kumar clinched bronze in the men’s discus throw - F52

In the high jump event, the 22-year-old Nishad Kumar clinched the second spot behind the double Olympic champion from the 2016 Rio Paralympics, Roderick Townsend-Roberts of the USA. Roberts also won the long jump event at Rio.

Roderick Townsend-Roberts set a new world record en route to retaining his Paralympic crown with a 2.15 metres jump, while Nishad Kumar and another American Dallas Wise were tied for second place. The two athletes cleared a height of 2.06 metres.

The performance also saw the world No. 3 Nishad Kumar match his personal best in the event. He had set the Asian record with the same height during the 12th Fazaa International Championships for World Para Athletics Grand Prix in Dubai earlier this year.

Meanwhile, the other Indian in the mix, Ram Pal, finished fifth with a personal best of 1.94 metres.

Later, Vinod Kumar too joined the party with a bronze medal in the men’s discus throw.

Vinod Kumar at the Tokyo Paralympics.
Picture by Paralympic Committee of India

Heading into the field as the fifth competitor, the Rohtak-born athlete made a slow start but eventually improved to produce a 19.91 metre throw in his fifth attempt - a new Asian record. The Indian athlete broke the previous best of 19.69 metres set by Hossein Khorsandamiri of Iran at the 2018 Asian Para Games.

While the effort provisionally pushed him to the top of the pile, Vinod Kumar slid down to the bronze medal position in the final standings. 

Poland’s Piotr Kosewicz won the gold medal with a throw of 20.02 metres while Velimir Sandor of Croatia took the silver medal with an effort of 19.98 metres.