Javelin thrower Murakami sets big target for Osaka GP


Men’s javelin world bronze medalist Yukifumi Murakami said Tuesday he has set his sights on a new personal-best throw at next month’s Osaka Grand Prix.

“My target this season is to throw 85 meters,” Murakami told a press conference for the May 8 meet at Nagai Stadium.

Murakami nailed a second throw of 82.97 meters to become the first Japanese to medal in the event at the 2009 IAAF World Athletics Championships in Berlin . He reached the final with a personal-best throw of 83.10.

Meanwhile, Beijing Olympic men’s hammer bronze medalist Koji Murofushi, who is training in the United States, has not returned to Japan due to fatigue but is hopeful of appearing in Osaka, according to his father, Shigenobu.

“He (Koji) is doing the training now that he couldn’t because he was injured and is positive about appearing in this meet,” said Shigenobu Murofushi, a former hammer thrower.

The Osaka Grand Prix, an IAAF World Challenge event, doubles up as a qualifier for Japanese athletes for the Asian Games in Guangzhou, China in November.