Indian shooters shine at ISSF World Cup, securing silver medals in 10m Air Rifle events

(Image Courtesy: Twitter/SAI Media)
Indian shooters shone at the World Cup (Image Courtesy: Twitter/SAI Media)

Indian shooters showcased their exceptional skills at the ISSF World Cup in Baku, adding two silver medals to their tally on Friday. With these recent victories, their total medal count reached an impressive four.

The medals were achieved in the highly competitive 10m air rifle events, with one medal in the men's competition and the other in the women's category. It marked a significant milestone for both Hriday Hazarika, the former junior world champion from Assam, and Nancy from Haryana. They both secured their first individual senior World Cup medals.

The finals witnessed a display of remarkable marksmanship. Hriday Hazarika delivered a brilliant performance, with his lowest score of 10.1 coming in the very first shot of the 24-shot contest. Nancy surpassed expectations with the lowest score of 10.2 in her final.

However, both shooters faced tough competition from more accurate opponents on the day. Hriday narrowly missed the gold medal to Hungary's Zalan Pekler, with a score of 251.9 against the Hungarian's 252.4.

Nancy, despite initially leading by a narrow margin over China's Han Jiayu, couldn't maintain her advantage and finished with 253.3 to her opponent's 254.0.

The quality of both the men's and women's finals was exceptional. This is exemplified by China's Sheng Lihao, who recorded the only score in the nines among the six medallists across the two finals in men's 10m Air Rifle.

The intense battle for supremacy between China and India continued, with China leading the medal tally with two gold, one silver, and two bronze. India closely follows with one gold, two silver, and one bronze.


Hriday Hazarika's stellar performance in men's 10m Air Rifle Final

Hriday Hazarika (Image Courtesy: Twitter/SAI Media)
Hriday Hazarika (Image Courtesy: Twitter/SAI Media)

Hriday Hazarika acknowledged the phenomenal performance of Hungarian shooter Zalan Pekler, who proved to be invincible on the day. Pekler, in a remarkable display of form, had previously won the gold in the 10m air rifle at the World Cup stage in Lima.

He persisted in his extraordinary run by shooting 636.2, just missing the world record mark during qualification. Chinese shooter Sheng Lihao, the Tokyo Olympics silver medallist, took the bronze and also set a new world record in qualification with an impressive score of 637.9.

Hriday voiced his satisfaction with his performance, acknowledging that he had no precise expectations at the start of the day during the men's 10m Air Rifle Final. He strived to execute his plan to the best of his abilities, and his disciplined approach paid off.

In a fiercely competitive final portraying celebrated shooters like Yang Haoran and Istvan Peni, Hriday remained composed and consistently performed well alongside Zalan.

He held his second-place position until the 20th shot, when Sheng outperformed him. Despite Hriday's ruthless efforts, he fell just short of catching up with Zalan, finishing a mere 0.5 points behind.

Rudrankksh Patil and Shahu Tushar Mane, the other Indian participants, secured the 19th and 23rd positions, sequentially.

Indian shooters have once again displayed their monumental talent and determination on the global stage, setting their sights on further success in the rest of the competition.

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Edited by Akshay Saraswat
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