Saturday, July 13, 2024

Ganemat in second as India’s search for first medal in Doha continues

The Indian Shooting squad made two more finals in Doha’s Lusail Shooting range, but a medal still eluded them on competition day two of the season-ending ISSF World Cup Final (WCF). Ganemat Sekhon finished second at the end of day one of qualifications in the women’s skeet, raising hopes yet again, even as Hriday Hazarika and Elavenil Valarivan in the men’s and women’s air rifle registered two more seventh place finishes after reaching the top eights, emulating Divya TS’s effort in the women’s air pistol from day one.

Early on Wednesday, Hriday shot 629.4 to qualify in eighth place while Elavenil also took the eighth and final qualifying spot with a score of 630.8. The Indians who missed out on a top-eight spot on the day were Rudrankksh Patil among the men and Ramita Jindal and Mehuli Ghosh among women. While the former shot a subdued 626.1 to finish 13th, Ramita and Mehuli were ninth and 10th with scores of 629.4 and 628.3 respectively.

In the men’s air rifle final, Hriday began with a 10.6 and returned a score of 51.9 after the first five-shot series to be in fifth position. His eighth shot was a 10.9 but his fifth and sixth being in the nine-ring meant he would go down to seventh after 10 shots. He did improve to sixth after his 12th shot but German Maximillian Ulbrich outgunned him in the 13th and 14th as the Indian bowed. Zalan Pekler of Hungary won gold.

Tokyo Olympian Elavenil, who already has a WCF gold to her name, began her final with a solid 10.8 only to follow-up with a 9.9 which pegged her back in a world-class field. After 10-shots, Ela was in elimination zone, however, Tokyo Olympic medallist Mary Tucker of the USA was to take eighth place with a low 10 on the 12th as the Indian survived, only to become the third Indian in two days to exit in seventh after the 14th shot. Poland’s Aneta Stankiewicz won gold as Zhiling Wang of China took silver.

In the women’s skeet Ganemat Sekhon began shot three identical rounds of 24/25 to place second on countback to leader Assem Orynbay of Kazakhstan. The duo was among four shooters on the same score of 72, including skeet legend Kimberly Rhode of the United States.

Prithviraj Tondaiman in the men’s trap had two rounds of 46 to begin with and was outside the top six.

Meanwhile, back home at the MP State Shooting Academy ranges in Bhopal, India internationals continued to shine at the 66th National Shooting Championship Competitions, as Manu Bhaker won gold in the women’s 25m pistol. The former Youth Olympic Champion shot 37 in the final to outshoot Punjab’s Simranpreet Kaur Brar’s effort of 34-hits in the final constituting 10 series of five rapid-fire shots.

It was a double gold for Manu as she also won the team event in the discipline along with Rhythm Sangwan and Vibhuti Bhatia.

Earlier last week, Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar had won the men’s 50m rifle 3 positions (3P) event in New Delhi’s Karni Singh Shooting Range, where the Rifle nationals are being held.



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