At the upcoming Tokyo Olympics, Manu Bhaker is going to be part of the strongest ever Indian shooting contingent comprising of 15 players in 11 different disciplines. The Indian shooting contingent, traveling to the Tokyo Olympics, has a perfect mix of experience and youth.
From the 40-year old veteran shooter Sanjeev Rajput (50m Rifle 3 Position Men) to 18 year-old teenage sensation Divyansh Panwar (10m Air Rifle Men and Mixed Team), the Indian contingent has shooters from varied age groups and experience.
The most exciting facet of this Indian shooting contingent is that they have all been in tremendous form over the last two years. They have been dominating shooting competitions across the globe like never before.
Most of them are ranked among the top 5 in the world and hence are bright medal prospects going into the Tokyo Olympics.
With the introduction of mixed team events, many of the pistol and rifle shooters will be shooting for medals in two events (i.e. their individual events and the mixed team events).
However, there is one Indian shooter who has qualified to shoot in as many as three events at the Tokyo Olympics. Her name is Manu Bhaker, one of the most talented and versatile Indian shooters of all time.
We take a detailed look at the 3 events in which Manu will participate and try and analyze what her chances are in those 3 events at the Tokyo Olympics.
Manu Bhaker (Shooting):
Participating Events at the Tokyo Olympics: 10m Air Pistol Women, 25m Pistol Women & 10m Air Pistol Mixed Team (with Saurabh Chaudhary)
Teenage shooting sensation Manu Bhaker will be leading the Indian pistol shooting contingent at the Tokyo Olympics. She is one of the best pistol shooters India has ever produced.
What makes Manu extra special is her versatility. She is the only Indian shooter to be ranked in the top 10 in all the 3 pistol shooting events at the Tokyo Olympics.
Manu is currently number two in the world in the women's 10m air pistol, which is her pet event. She will be participating in the event at the Tokyo Olympics alongside her compatriot Yashaswini Singh Deswal, who is presently ranked number 1 in the world.
These two young girls from India will be the firm favorites to clinch the top two spots in the event.
Manu will also be in the fray at the Women's 25m pistol event. In this event, she is presently ranked number seven in the world and will be accompanied by the veteran Indian shooter Rahi Sarnobat (world no 2).
Manu is not the favorite to win gold in this event, as it is not her pet event. But if she shoots well then a podium finish is very much possible for her.
The third event in which Manu will be participating in Tokyo is the newly introduced 10m Air Pistol Mixed team event. Here, Manu will be teaming up with another 19-year old shooting sensation, Saurabh Chaudhary.
Their team has been the most successful team in the event, ever since it was introduced 3 years back. They have already won as many as four World Cup golds (three in 2019 and one in 2021) in this event, and are presently the top ranked team in the world.
Manu will not be aiming for anything less than a gold medal in this event in Tokyo.
Manu Bhaker is set to win more than 1 medal in shooting in the upcoming Olympic Games if she is able to shoot according to her potential.
Manu Bhaker's Probable Medal Count in Tokyo:
Total: 2 to 3
Gold: 0-2 Silver: 0-1 Bronze: 1-2