A day after Rahi Sarnobat and Kynan Chenai proved their mettle with some quality performances, the Olympic team selection trials on Wednesday saw the pistol duo of Saurabh Chaudhary and Aishwary Pratap come up with an inspired show in New Delhi.
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While Saurabh Chaudhary topped the charts at the Dr. Karni Singh Shooting Range in the 10m Air Pistol with a total score of 588, Aishwary Pratap was on top the 50m Rifle 3 Positions event with a total of 1178. In the 10m Air Pistol, the 17-year-old Saurabh Chaudhary enjoyed a fine day as he barely fell below 97 in each of the six rounds of firing, and even managed a perfect 100 in the fifth.
The Tokyo Olympic quota winner, Saurabh Chaudhary, will hope to build on this run once the season kicks off in the coming months. Close on his heels was his fellow Olympic 2020 quota winner Abhishek Verma who managed 585 in his six rounds.
Though the 30-year-old started brightly, challenging Saurabh Chaudhary in the initial two rounds, a 95 in the third round saw him fall short at the end. Meanwhile, the 2018 Youth Olympic gold medalist Manu Bhaker was eighth with a total score of 574 while Yashaswini Singh Deswal was rooted to the bottom with a score of 570.
Meanwhile, in the 50m Rifle 3 Positions event, Aishwary Pratap was in complete control of the proceedings as he barely put a foot wrong. While Anjum Moudgil took the challenge to the 19-year-old in the prone position, the 26-year-old from Chandigarh couldn’t continue the same run in the standing position, allowing Aishwary Pratap to regain the control of the proceedings.
While Aishwary Pratap shot 1178 on aggregate (393 kneelings, 393 prone, 392 standing) to take the top spot, Anjum Moudgil managed 1174 (391 kneelings, 399 prone, 384 standing). India had pulled out of the Nicosia Shotgun World Cup earlier this month and the New Delhi combined World Cup was postponed due to the global COVID-19 outbreak. As a result, it was decided to conduct the trials for those selected in the Indian shooting teams for those two events, to allow them to post their final remaining scores before the announcement of the Olympic team.