India's rifle shooters are likely to make headlines at the Tokyo Olympics 2020 later this month. India will be sending eight rifle shooters to the quadrennial event in japan, with four each competing in a 10m air rifle and 50m rifle 3 positions.
Two Indian rifle shooters have won medals in the rifle event at the Olympics. Abhinav Bindra won India's only Olympic gold in the men's 10m air rifle event at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, while Gagan Narang bagged the bronze medal in the same shooting event at the 2012 London Olympics.
The Indian shooting contingent consists of 15 members, the second-largest contingent of the country after hockey (16 each in men's and women's teams) for the Tokyo Olympics 2020. The Indian shooters have been training in Croatia for over a month now and are slated to leave for Tokyo on 17th July 2021.
Rifle shooters who can win medals for India at the Tokyo Olympics 2020
#1 Divyansh Singh Panwar (men's 10m air rifle)
Divyansh Singh Panwar is considered one of the medal hopefuls in shooting for India. The 18-year-old will represent the country in the 10m air rifle individual and the mixed team events at the Tokyo Olympics 2020.
Jaipur lad Divyansh Singh Panwar won his first individual gold medal in the 10m air rifle event at the 2019 ISSF World Cup in Putian, China. He booked his Olympic berth at the Tokyo Olympics 2020 after winning the silver medal at the 2019 ISSF World Cup in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
At the recently concluded 2021 ISSF World Cup in Croatia, Osijek, the 18-year-old shooter lost in the qualifying round of the 10m air rifle. However, there's still hope that he can make an impact at the quadrennial event in Japan.
Divyansh Singh Panwar will be paired with Elavenil Valarivan for the 10m air rifle mixed team event at the Tokyo Olympics 2020.
#2 Elavenil Valarivan (women's 10m air rifle)
Elavenil Valarivan is one of the Indian shooters to watch out for at the Tokyo Olympics 2020. She will be featured in the 10m air rifle individual and mixed team events.
The 21-year-old first broke into the limelight when she won two gold medals in the 10m air rifle at the 2018 Junior ISSF World Cup. The following year, she clinched the gold medal at the 2019 ISSF World Cup in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In April 2021, Elavenil Valarivan was selected to represent India at the Tokyo Olympics 2020.
Elavenil Valarivan will be paired with Divyansh Singh Panwar for the 10m air rifle mixed team event at the quadrennial event in Japan.
#3 Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar (men's 50m rifle 3 positions)
Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar is one of the Indian air rifle shooters to watch out for at the Tokyo Olympics 2020. He will be featured in the 50m rifle 3 positions individual event at the Tokyo Olympics 2020.
The 20-year-old is the current world No.1 in the 50m rifle 3 position. He is one of the three Indian shooters who will enter quadrennial event in Japan ranked no.1 in the world. Aishwary won his first gold medal in the 50m air rifle 3 positions event at the 2021 ISSF World Cup in New Delhi.
At the 2021 ISSF World Cup in Osijek, Croatia, Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar finished sixth in the 50m air rifle 3 position. The former world junior champion is one of India's medal hopefuls in shooting at the Tokyo Olympics 2020.
#4 Sanjeev Rajput (men's 50m rifle 3 positions)
Sanjeev Rajput is one of the medal hopefuls in the rifle event for India at the Tokyo Olympics 2020. He will be representing the country in the men's 50m air rifle 3 position.
The veteran rifle shooter made his Summer Games debut at the 2008 Beijing Olympics but didn't win any medals. Sanjeev Rajput has won two gold medals in the 50m rifle 3 positions at the ISSF World Cup.
In 2018, a former Indian Navy Officer won his first ever Commonwealth Games gold medal at the Gold Coast Games, Australia. At the Tokyo Olympics 2020, Sanjeev Rajput will face stiff competition from Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar.