Apurvi Chandela wins Gold at the Swedish Air-Rifle Championship with a world record score
Young Indian shooter Apurvi Chandela further fortified her chances of winning a medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics, as she began her year on a high by winning the Gold in the 10m Air Rifle at the Swedish Air Rifle Championship. The 23-year old had a tally of 211.2 in the final and 418.3 in the qualification round.
The final tally was also a world record surpassing China’s Yi Siling’s tally of 211.
Chandela has already qualified for Rio, and had a fantastic 2015, as she won the women’s gold in 10m air rifle event in the 59th National Shooting Championship in New Delhi last month. Her tally was 207.8 in the final, and 417.0 in the qualification rounds of the tournament.
She had also impressed in the ISSF Rifle and Pistol World Cup Finals, by clinching the silver medal in the same event in Munich in September last year, only behind Ahmadi Elaheh of Iran who eventually won the gold, by scoring 10.4 in the final shot, just 0.2 points ahead of the Indian.
The Jaipur girl’s tally in that tournament was 206.9 as compared to Elaheh’s score of 207.5. At such a ripe young age the shooter has already brought several laurels to her country and herself and can be definitely seen as an Olympic medal contender.
The 2014 Commonwealth Games gold medalist trains under the national coach Stanislav Lapidus, the man who was credited with having already provided India an Olympic medal in the form of Gagan Narang in the 2012 London Olympics.
“When she got quota for Rio in the World Cup in Korea, most people were surprised,” he had said in September.
“But, I was not. I knew she was ready. My job is not just to improve her technique. I spent more energy making her understand her potential and helping her become mentally confident.”
“A shooter needs time to adapt and accept that she is part of the elite shooters in the world. Apurvi became one very quickly. She had to recognise herself as one of the top shooters in the world.”
Being known as a humble person, the woman who celebrated her 23rd birthday on January 4 still doesn’t consider herself as one of the best n the world as she had said, “I will only accept that when I perform at the Olympics.”
With such hunger to excel and the determination to perform, India might just get lucky for the third straight Olympic Games as this young woman is well in line to continue the tradition started by Abhinav Bindra and followed by Narang.