Hockey has traditionally been the country’s saving grace at Olympics. Eight of the ten medals were won by legendary hockey teams, including three gold medals in 1960, 1968, and 1984. The current demise of the sport in the country has resulted in no possibility of qualifying for the Olympics.
In these circumstances, Pakistan’s chances of capturing a medal have increasingly diminished. After all, only two people have ever won a medal for Pakistan: wrestler Mohammad Bashir in Rome in 1960 and boxer Hussain Shah in Seoul in 1988. However, the rise of one athlete has transformed the grim scenario and given the country its first Olympic medal aspirations in 30 years.
Is anyone familiar with Mian Channu’s Arshad Nadeem? After today, I believe no one heard about this Pakistani treasure who was an extraordinarily flexible athlete in his early school years. Though Arshad Nadeem participated in all of his school’s sports — cricket, badminton, football, and athletics — his passion was cricket, and he quickly found himself competing in district-level tape-ball events.
Our Spear of Hope in Olympics
After a few years, though, Nadeem was forced to choose between cricket and athletics. Arshad, the third oldest of five brothers, was inspired by his elder brothers, both of whom were divisional-level athletes, and opted to pursue sports after a detailed discussion with his coach. “It was difficult to say goodbye to cricket, but it turned out to be one of the best decisions of my life.
On December 7, 2019, history unfolded as Arshad smashed the national record with a throw of 86.29m, clinching gold and eclipsing Chopra’s games record set in 2016 by four meters. The distance was well over the direct qualification mark of 85m for the 2020 Olympics, making him the first Pakistani athlete to qualify directly for the Olympics in decades.
Javelin thrower Arshad Nadeem has become the first Pakistani athlete in decades to qualify directly for the Olympics. His story is nothing less than inspiring story.
The South Asian Games gold medalist is one of the few Pakistani athletes to qualify directly for the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Speaking to the media after qualifying for the final, Nadeem expressed gratitude to Pakistanis for their support. Soliciting more prayers from his fans, he hoped to provide an outstanding performance in the final.
The athlete also expressed gratitude to his coach for his diligent work in preparing him for the Olympics. His final words were “Pakistan Zindabad” and he promised to continue performing like he had been.