Yukifumi Murakami, Japan

Yukifumi Murakami

Yukifumi Murakami (村上 幸史 Murakami Yukifumi, born 23 December 1979 in Kamijima, Ehime) is a Japanese javelin thrower. He was the first Japanese athlete to win a World Championship medal in the javelin, taking bronze at the 2009 edition with a throw of 82.97 metres.

He was successful as a junior athlete and won the bronze medal in the javelin at the 1998 World Junior Championships in Athletics. He established himself as one of Asia's top throwers in the following years, winning silver medals at the 2001 East Asian Games, 2002 Asian Games, and the 2003 Asian Athletics Championships.

His first global appearance was at the 2004 Summer Olympics and he finished 18th overall in the final rankings. The 2005 World Championships in Athletics was his next major tournament but he finished in 27th place with a disappointing throw of 68.31 m. He was runner-up for a second time at the 2006 Asian Games and took part in the 2008 Summer Olympics two years later.

Murakami was voted the Japanese athlete of the year for 2009 by both Rikujyo Kyougi Magazine (Track and Field Magazine of Japan) and the Japan Association of Athletics Federations. These awards capped a decade of national dominance – with ten consecutive wins, he won the javelin at every national championships in the 2000s. His performance at the 2009 World Championships included a personal best of 83.10 m to qualify for the final, and 82.97 m to win the bronze medal – his second best ever throw. He finished the year with a gold medal performance at the 2009 Asian Athletics Championships.

He started 2010 with a throw of 82.49 m in Wakayama in April – his longest throw achieved in Japan. He extended his consecutive national title run to eleven in June, out-throwing Nobuhiro Sato by four metres.

In 2011 he won the Asia Championships again, then he finished 14th at the World Championships.

In 2012 he threw 77.80 m and finished 24th at the Summer Olympics in London.

On April 29, 2013, he extended his personal best more than 2 meters to 85.96, 2nd best in Japan after Kazuhiro Mizoguchi.


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