Moscow: India’s Vikas Gowda on Monday advanced to the men’s discus throw final in the 14th IAAF World Athletics Championships, after finishing seventh overall in the qualification round here.
National record holder and reigning Asian champion Gowda finished fourth in qualification round A, with a best throw of 63.64m. That was his first attempt on the third day of the competition, at the Luzhniki Stadium.
Reigning world and Olympic champion Robert Harting of Germany was the lead thrower going into the final round with an effort of 66.62m.
Piotr Malachowski of Poland was second overall in the qualification with 66.00m while London Olympics bronze medallist Gerd Kanter of Estonia was third with 65.54m. Gowda’s personal best, which is a national record, is 66.28. The final will be held on Tuesday.
Gowda was born in Mysore, but grew up in Frederick, Maryland in the US.
He contested at the 2008 Beijing Olympics but failed to reach the finals after finishing 22nd in the qualifiers, with a throw of 60.69 m.
However, in 2012 London Olympics, Vikas qualified for the finals, at the fifth place, with a throw of 65.20 m. he then finished 8th in the finals.
Earlier this year, Gowda had clinched the gold in the 20th Asian Athletics Championships.
Gowda, 30, had an impressive throw of 64.90m in his fourth attempt. It was his first gold of the Asian Championships in his fifth appearance. He had won a silver each in the 2005 and 2011 editions.
In fact, Gowda’s Asian Championships feat had earned him the automatic World Championships berth.
Apart from Gowda, women’s 20km race walker Khusbir Kaur will also compete on Tuesday.
The Indians had disappointed on Sunday as KT Irfan was disqualified after raising hopes of a creditable finish till the halfway mark.
National record holder Irfan was in the sixth position after the halfway mark and was maintaining his spot just before touching the 15-km point.
But Irfan, who had finished 10th in the 2012 London Olympics, was stopped by the race officials before the three-fourth mark for race rule violations. (Agencies)