In his­toric first, In­dia top ISSF World Cup medals tally

DNA (Daily News & Analysis) Mumbai Edition - - FRONT PAGE -

A podium eluded them on the fi­nal day but In­dian shoot­ers had done enough to fin­ish at the top of the medals tally at the ISSF World Cup in Guadala­jara, Mex­ico, their best-ever show­ing at the event.

In­dia fin­ished with four gold, one sil­ver and four bronze to top the medals tally for the first time in an ISSF com­pe­ti­tion.

Two-time Olympic cham­pion Vin­cent Han­cock of the USA won the men’s skeet com­pe­ti­tion, the con­clud­ing event of the year’s first In­ter­na­tional Shoot­ing Sport Fed­er­a­tion (ISSF) World Cup.

Among the three In­dian shoot­ers in fray, Smit Singh shot 116 in the qual­i­fy­ing to be placed 15th, An­gad Ba­jwa shot 115 to end in 18th spot while Sheeraz Sheikh se­cured the 30th spot with a score of 112.

Han­cock, who had won gold at the Bei­jing and Lon­don Olympics, had gone into a bit of a slump af­ter win­ning the 2015 World Cham­pi­onships and made a come­back of sorts with this win.

He did it in style by first top­ping qual­i­fi­ca­tion with a sub­lime 123 out of 125 and then fol­lowed it up in the fi­nal, with a world record equalling 59 out of 60. He was matched by Paul Adams of Aus­tralia and fi­nally got the bet­ter of him 6-5 in a shootoff for gold.

Italy’s Tam­maro Cas­san­dro won bronze with 49 hits in the fi­nal.

In­dia’s Smit was placed seventh in the be­gin­ning of the day and stood a chance of qual­i­fy­ing but rounds of 22, 23 and 23 put cold wa­ter on all such hopes.

An­gad Ba­jwa re­turned rounds of 24, 25 and 24 but had dropped too far be­hind on the first day of qual­i­fy­ing and Sheeraz Sheikh did not look in his el­e­ment in this event.

The fail­ure on the last day not­with­stand­ing, In­dia will re­turn home with happy mem­o­ries.

Shahzar Rizvi, Manu Bhaker, Akhil She­o­ran and Om Prakash Mithar­val won the gold medals in the com­pe­ti­tion. An­jum Moudgil bagged a sil­ver, while es­tab­lished names such as Jitu Rai and Ravi Ku­mar fin­ished with bronze. Shahzar Rizvi (10m Air Pis­tol Men, in­di­vid­ual), Manu Bhaker (10m Air Pis­tol Women, in­di­vid­ual and 10m Air Pis­tol Mixed Team), Om Prakash Mithar­val (10m Air Pis­tol Mixed Team) and Akhil She­o­ran (50m Ri­fle 3 Po­si­tions Men, in­di­vid­ual)

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