Tokyo Olympics 2020: 4 shooting events in which India can win a gold medal
In the Olympics, the sport of shooting has been India's most productive event in the last two decades. The sport has given rise to four Olympic medallists from India, including the country's first-ever individual gold medallist, Abhinav Bindra.
Shooting has produced many champions both in the Pistol and Rifle events as well as in the Shotgun events namely big names such as Abhinav Bindra, Gagan Narang, Rajyavardhan Rathore, Vijay Kumar, Anjali Bhagwat, Ranjan Sodhi, Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Jitu Rai.
Although India has been producing many champion shooters across various disciplines for quite some time, as a nation, India is yet to reach the tag of a shooting powerhouse like China.
Yet, 2019 was the watershed year for Indian shooting. India topped the combined medals tally in the World Cup events held in the previous year as the shooters combined to win as many as 19 gold medals in the various ISSF events in 2019 alone, which is an unbelievable achievement, considering the fact that they had won only 17 gold medals in the previous nine years combined.
India's steady rise as a potential powerhouse in the sport of shooting makes the country's shooters favourites to win quite a few gold medals in the upcoming Tokyo Olympics 2020. In this article, we have a look at four shooting events in which one can expect the Indian shooters to add the most medals to India's Tokyo Olympics 2020 medal tally.
#1 10m Air Pistol men: Saurabh Chaudhary and Abhishek Verma
India have secured the two available Olympic quota places for this discipline owing to World No.2 Abhishek Verma and World No.4 Saurabh Chaudhary's stellar performances in the recent past.
Abhishek and Saurabh dominated this particular event last year as they both won two gold medals each at the ISSF World Cups in 2019, which is an incredible achievement. If they are able to replicate similar performances at the upcoming Olympics, they have a big chance of clinching the gold medal from this event.
#2 10m Air Pistol women: Manu Bhaker
India secured the two available Olympic quotas in this discipline through consistent performances from World No.3 Manu Bhaker and World No.5 Yashaswini Singh Deswal.
A teenage sensation and Youth Olympic champion, Manu Bhaker is a proud owner of an ISSF World Cup Gold medal. Manu has established herself as one of the best shooters in the world and if she is able to hold her nerve and shoot well, then she is a serious contender for the gold medal in the 10m Air Pistol event in Tokyo.
#3 10m Air Rifle men: Divyansh Singh Panwar
This is another discipline in which the Indian shooters have secured the two available Olympic quota places. World No.2 Divyansh Singh Panwar is India's best bet in this discipline. He has been in terrific form in the last two years and has won medals in almost all the big international events, including a silver medal and gold medal in the ISSF World Cup in Beijing and Putin respectively.
#4 10m Air Rifle women: Elavenil Valarivan, Anjum Moudgil and Apurvi Chandela
In the 10m Air Rifle women discipline, India has been the most dominant country in the world for the last two years. The country has as many as three shooters in the top five of the world rankings including numero uno ranked Elavenil Valarivan, who clinched the gold medal at the ISSF World Cup in Putian.
Besides Valarivan, World No.3 Anjum Moudgil and World No.5 Apurvi Chandela form the three options for the selectors to pick for the two slots at the Olympics. With these three top shooters vying to land one of the two spots, one could expect either of them to add to India's Tokyo Olympics 2020 medal tally.
Published 13 Feb 2020, 10:34 IST