Sumit Antil is an Indian Paralympian athlete and javelin throw player who is well-known for winning the gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics. He threw the javelin at a distance of 68.55 m in the finals and broke the world record and his personal record thrice.
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Sumit Antil was born on Saturday, 6 July 1998 (age 23 years; as of 2021), Khewda, Sonipat, Haryana. His zodiac sign is Gemini. After completing his schooling, Sumit attended Ramjas College in Delhi to attain a degree in Bachelor of Commerce. During his school time, he wanted to pursue a career in the field of wrestling, however, he had to let go of this dream after he lost one of his legs in an accident when he was seventeen years old.
Height: 6′ 2″
Eye Colour: Black
Hair Colour: Black
His late father Ram Kumar Antil was an Indian Air Force official, and his mother, Nirmala Devi is a homemaker. He is the youngest of four siblings and has three elder sisters- Kiran, Sushila, and Renu Antil.
Sumit Antil was in high school when he thought of pursuing a career in wrestling, but in 2015, he met with an accident after which he had to change his course of action for his future. In 2017, he was introduced to para-athletics by a para-athlete from his village. Sumit was introduced to Naval Singh, a coach in Delhi, who convinced Sumit to opt for javelin throw as his sport. After the injury, Sumit had not done any sort of exercise for a long time, and initially, he worked on his strength training and stamina building. Despite the problems faced by him, Sumit kept working hard to improve his performance and the results started pouring in. He got the second position at the Indian Open National Para-Athletics Championship 2019 in Banglore. In his international debut, he finished in the fifth position during the Asia Para Games, Jakarta in 2018.
Silver medal in World Para Athletics Championship, Dubai in 2019
Silver medal in Paris Open Handisport 2019
Silver medal in World Para Athletics Grand Prix, Italy in 2019
Gold medal in 2020 Summer Paralympics, Tokyo in 2021
Wrestler: Yogeshwar Dutt
Sumit Antil was seven years old when his father passed away due to a prolonged medical illness. After this, his mother took care of him, and his elder sisters.
Sumit was a huge fan of Yogeshwar Dutt, and he wanted to start his career as a professional wrestler. However, when he was seventeen years old, he met with an accident when he was coming back from his tuition, and a tractor-trolly loaded with cement hit him. Sumit was immediately rushed to the military hospital where he was operated and the doctors had to amputate his leg. After two months of bed rest, Sumit went to Artificial Limb Center, Pune to get a prosthetic leg.
Initially, Sumit faced a lot of problems with his workout routines as due to excessive heat, the liner of his prosthetic leg would fill up with blood and sweat. However, Sumit kept practicing and improved his performance in the game. In an interview, Naval Singh said-
When I saw Sumit for the first time I had to motivate him a lot. He wanted to be a wrestler, but that career path wasn’t possible then. Sumit has good height and physique. He was 6’2 and had a good build. I knew if I worked on him, he could do wonders. I managed to convince him to switch to javelin and he started training under me.”
After some time, Sumit began performing well in several national and international games and he started winning medals for his team. He won his first silver medal during the World Para Athletics Championship that was held in Dubai in 2019. He broke his personal record of distance by throwing the javelin to a distance of 62.88 m.
He improved his performance over time, and after observing him, GoSports Foundation decided to include Sumit in the Para Champions Programme in 2019 to support him financially.
Naval Singh was working with Sumit and he was confident that Sumit would bring a gold medal for the country in the Paralympics and he did. In an interview, Naval said-
I have never seen such a dedicated sportsperson. He is so determined. I’m sure he will win gold at the Paralympics.”
While Sumit Antil won a gold medal in the Tokyo Paralympics, Yogesh Kathuniya won a silver medal in the discus throw competition. The Haryana Government has decided to offer a cash reward of Rs. 6 crores to Sumit Antil, and Rs. 4 crores to Yogesh Kathuniya. They also received government job offers along with cash rewards.
#TokyoParalympics | Haryana government to honour gold medalist javelin thrower, Sumit Antil, with a cash reward of Rs 6 cr and silver medalist discus thrower Yogesh Kathuniya with Rs 4 cr.
Haryana govt also offers govt jobs to Sumit Antil and Yogesh Kathuniya.
— ANI (@ANI) August 30, 2021
Sumit made the world record in the javelin throw with a distance of 68.55 m but he said that he has done better during his practice sessions. In an interview with India Today, Sumit said-
It is a dream come true. I can’t express my feelings right now. This is my first Paralympics and I was a little nervous because the competitors are great. I was hoping for a 70-meter-plus throw, maybe I can do 75m. It was not my best, I am very happy to break the world record”.
Many politicians, actors, and fellow athletes came forward to congratulate Sumit Antil for winning the gold medal for the nation in the Paralympics. Indian athletes like Olympics medal winner Abhinav Bindra, 2016 Summer Paralympics silver medalist Deepa Malik, and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics gold medal winner Neeraj Chopra praised Sumit’s performance during the games and wished him luck for his future.
ख़तरनाक performance भाई सुमित 👌💪 proud of you 🇮🇳 https://t.co/CNUDDtPAc7
— Neeraj Chopra (@Neeraj_chopra1) August 30, 2021
Sumit received a phone call from the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi as the news of his victory in the Paralympics surfaced on the news channels. Narendra Modi congratulated him for winning the gold medal, and later, he posted a tweet on his Twitter account praising him.
Our athletes continue to shine at the #Paralympics! The nation is proud of Sumit Antil’s record-breaking performance in the Paralympics.
Congratulations Sumit for winning the prestigious Gold medal. Wishing you all the best for the future.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 30, 2021