The Discus throw sensation will be a part of the Indian contingent that participates in the Tokyo Olympics.
Kamalpreet Kaur created a national record to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics during the 24th Federation Cup Senior Athletics Championships. The 25-year-old surprised everyone as she covered 65.06m in her first throw itself during the tournament in Patiala.
In her effort, she went past the Olympic qualification mark of 63.50m to qualify for the mega event. She even bettered the 2014 Asian Games Champion Seema Punia. The veteran athlete finished second with a throw of 62.64m and fell short of the Olympic Qualification mark.
Seema Punia failed to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics by less than a meter. The 37-year-old had won consecutive medals at 2006, 2010, 2014, and 2018 Commonwealth Games. Sonal Goyal of Delhi took the bronze medal with a best throw of 52.11m.
Kamalpreet Kaur had recorded her previous best performance in 2018 with a throw of 61.04 m. Notably, with her magnificent throw of 65.06m, she surpassed the national record of 64.76m which was in name of Krishna Poonia since 2012.
She is now the 10th Indian in the track and field event to secure a berth at the highly prestigious quadrennial event. She is currently training under the guidance of Baljeet Singh who believes that his student has the potential to break the 68m mark in the coming months.
So who is Kamalpreet Kaur? Take a look at the five things you need to know about the latest Indian entry into the Tokyo Olympics:
First Indian to break the 65m mark
Kaur scripted history as she became the first Indian to breach the 65m mark in the Discus throw at the 24th Federation Cup Senior Athletics Championships held in Patiala. By doing so, she qualified for her maiden Olympics at the Tokyo Games.
Two Consecutive Gold medals at the Federation Cup
She clinched her first gold in the 2019 edition of the Federation Cup with a throw of 60.25m. In the 2021 edition, she improved by four metres on the final day of the Federation Cup to cover a distance of 65.06m and win her second gold medal.
Represents the Indian Railways
Kaur is a native of Badal village in Sri Muktsar Sahib district of Punjab. She is currently working as a clerk for the Indian Railways. The Indian athlete represents the Indian Railways in national tournaments as well.
Who encouraged her to take up Discus?
Kamalpreet Kaur was not interested in Academics during her childhood. It was on the insistence of her Physical Education coach that she took up Shot put in 2012. However, a coach at the SAI centre told her to shift to Discuss and she finished fourth in her first state tournament. Interestingly, in an interview with Scroll, she mentioned Cricket being her passion and her wish to take it up professionally after some time.
U-18 and U-20 National Champion
She started her training in 2014 at an SAI centre in her village. Soon, Kaur became the U-18 and U-20 National Champion in 2016. Later, she finished sixth at the World University Games in 2017.
Represented India at the Asian Championships
Kaur represented India at the 2019 Asian Championships which was held in Doha. She finished fifth at the Championship with a best throw of 55.59m. Moreover, winning Gold at the 2019 National Federation Cup helped her qualify for the Asian Championships.