New Delhi: Saurabh Chaudhary and Manu Bhaker stole the limelight for India, winning a quota berth each for their country for the Beunos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games (YOG), on the concluding day of the 10th Asian Championship 10m Rifle/Pistol (Asian Airgun Championship), in Wako City, Japan on Monday.
Saurabh won both the individual and Team Gold in the Men’s 10m Air Pistol Youth event while Manu won Silver in the Women’s 10M Air Pistol Youth en-route to achieving the feats.
Their efforts meant that India added four more medals to their kitty on the final day, another Silver coming from the Junior Women’s 10m Air Pistol team, to finish with a total haul of 21 medals over four days of competition in addition to four out of the 14 Asian quotas available in Shooting for the YOG.
Mehuli Ghosh and Tushar Mane had won one YOG quota each in 10m Air Rifle events, earlier on day two of competition.
The day, however, began with the junior women’s 10m Air Pistol event, where two Indians, junior world champion Yashaswini Singh Deswal and Mahima Agrawal made it to the field of eight finalists, finishing third and fourth in qualifying respectively.
Both shot a score of 378 while Yogita shot 372 to finish in 11th place. Their combined score of 1128 won them the team Silver behind Iran with 1144 and ahead of Korea who logged a total of 1122.
In the final, Yashaswini shot 195.7 to finish fourth while Mahima ended sixth on a score of 155.4. Yan Chen of China won Gold in the event in a World and Asian Record score of 240.1, beating Veronika Major and Yashaswini’s score of 235.9.
Two Indians again reached the finals of the Men’s 10m Air Pistol Youth event. Arjun Singh Cheema topped qualifying with a score of 577 while Saurabh shot 573 to qualify in third place. Surinder Singh, the third Indian in the field shot 561 to finish 10th and the trio won the Team Gold with a combined effort of 1711, 11 points clear of the Silver winning Korean team and 19 ahead of China who won Bronze.
Saurabh then came up with a start to finish effort in the final finishing with a score of 243.1 to win Gold and seal the first of the three available quotas in the process. He finished almost seven points ahead of Iran’s Erfan Salavati who won Silver with 236.2. Okcheo Shin of Korea won Bronze with 217.6. Arjun managed sixth place with 156.8.
In the Women’s 10m Air Pistol Youth, Manu Bhaker topped qualifying with a score of 382 and was the only Indian to reach the final.
Priya Raghav shot 368 to finish 16th and Anushka Patil shot 365 to finish 22nd. Manu then had a horrid start to the final, lying eighth after 10 shots, but then recovered wonderfully to win Silver, eventually getting piped by China’s Jiaruixuan Xiao by a margin of 0.1. Final scores read 236.1 to Xiao and 236.0 to Manu.
China’s Xue Li won Bronze with 215.5 and third quota place available while Thailand’s Kanyakom Hirunphoem came fourth to bag the final quota place.
The 37-member Indian contingent, therefore, came back with a total of six Gold, eight Silver and seven Bronze medals besides four YOG quotas. (ANI)