New Delhi: India made it two medals in two finals on competition day three of the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup Rifle/Pistol in Cairo, Egypt, after Esha Singh won silver in the Women’s 10M air pistol following Saurabh Chaudhary’s gold in the men’s event earlier on Tuesday.
The Telangana teenager went down to reigning world champion and world No. 1 Anna Korakaki of Greece, by a margin of 4-16 in the gold medal match. India now tops the medal tally with one gold and one silver in their kitty.
After winning multiple ISSF medals in the junior ranks for a few years, this was Esha Singh’s first medal in the India senior colours.
Shooting in an 80-strong top field consisting of the top two at Tokyo 2020 besides Korakaki, Esha shot a solid 578 to finish sixth in the 60-shot qualifying round to make it to the second semi-finals.
Here she trumped Korakaki along with the likes of Tokyo 2020 silver medallist Vitalina Batsarashkina of Russia to top the round with 41.5 points and sail through to the medal round. Korakaki followed her there with 40.
In the medal round, the duo met no less than Olympic champion Antoaneta Kostadinova of Bulgaria and Sandra Reitz of Germany, who had made it from the first semi-finals. They remained relentless, shooting just three scores in the 9s out of 12-shots- Korakaki topping the field with 37 points as Esha too deservedly earned her gold medal match spot with 35.5 points. The Olympic Champion had to settle for bronze, finishing with 26.5 points.
Esha kept up with the world champion for the first five shots of the final with the score reading 4-6, but Korakaki stamped her class in the end racing through the next five with consistent high inner 10s, reaching the required 16 points to close out the match.
Wednesday has about six finals, all of the team competitions on the roster and promises many more medals for India.
Over 500 athletes from 60 nations have entered to take part in the Cairo World Cup which has 20 medal sets on offer.