0630 GMT September 23, 2021
Ehsan Hadadi’s Tokyo Olympics campaign finished in disappointment as the Iranian failed to reach the men’s discus throw final.
The London 2012 silver medalist had to settle for a 14th-place finish in Group A of the competition with a best throw of 58.98m.
World champion Daniel Stahl of Sweden topped the group with a single throw, 66.12m, followed by Lithuania’s Andrius Gudzius (65.94m) and Australian Matthew Denny (65.13m).
The result meant that Hadadi – four-time Asian Games champion and a world bronze winner in 2011 – finished 26th in the overall standing in the Games.
The Iranian rued injuries and lack of preparations for his blow-par performance in Tokyo, saying, “I had a tough job to do [at the Olympics]. I missed a whole season of competitions with a COIVD-19 infection last year, and did not participate in any tournaments this year due to a back injury, before taking part in the Iranian league.”
A spinal disc problem had seen Hadadi cut short his preparations in the United States in June and fly back to Iran for treatment, before he played a part at the Iranian Clubs Athletics Championships days before the Olympics, where he suffered a fresh ankle injury, which jeopardized his participation at the Games.
“I should have taken part in several tournaments before the Olympics, but I was injured. I expected to record over 62 meters but unfortunately it didn’t happen,” said the Iranian.
“I’m not too sad about my result [in Tokyo]. I truly wanted to do better in my fourth Olympics, but I only came here out of respect for the Games as Iran couldn’t have replaced me with such a short time before the event,” added Hadadi.
When asked if it was his last appearance in the Olympics, Hadadi said, “I’m not really sure. I’ll take part at the Asian Games in Hangzhou next year and if achieve a good result there and my body lets me, then I’ll compete in Paris 2024.”