Neeraj Chopra most widely reported athlete in 2022, breaks Usain Bolt's streak
Neeraj Chopra replaced Usain Bolt as the track and field athlete that received the most media attention in 2022. Chopra finished first with 812 articles, ahead of the Jamaican women's sprint quartet of Elaine Thompson-Herah, Shelley-Ann Fraser-Pryce, and Shericka Jackson in the list.
With 574 references, Usain Bolt, the male sprinter who holds the 100- and 200-meter world records, is listed fourth. The Jamaican, who is now retired, has previously ranked first on the yearly list of athletes who receive the greatest media attention. World Athletics, the world's governing organisation for athletics, highlighted the statistics compiled by media analysis firm Unicepta on Friday.
“It is an interesting one (list). For the first time this year Usain Bolt has not led the list of the most written about athletes of the year,” according to World Athletics president Sebastian Coe, who addressed the media at a briefing.
Neeraj Chopra had yet another fantastic year on the international track and field circuit after earning a historic gold medal for India at Tokyo 2020 the previous year. He became just the second Indian to earn a medal at the World Athletic Championships in Eugene, Oregon in 2022, following Anju Bobby George's bronze in the women's long jump in 2003.
Neeraj Chopra also made history by being this year's first Indian athlete to win the Diamond League final. The current national record for the javelin thrower's personal best, 89.94 metres, was also set this year in the Stockholm Diamond League.
Due to an injury, the Indian javelin star was forced to withdraw from the remainder of the season and the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. The 24-year-old is making progress in his recuperation and has begun training at Loughborough University in the UK in anticipation of a demanding 2023 season.
The World Athletics Championships in Budapest in August, the Asian Games in Hangzhou in September, and the Diamond League tournaments the following year are where Neeraj Chopra is anticipated to compete.