The Hindu (Mumbai)

Shooters need finetuning ahead of the Paris Olympics, says Suma Shirur

- Sports Bureau

India’s rifle shooting coach Suma Shirur believes the shooters are in a very good zone ahead of the Paris Olympics, and all they need is a bit of finetuning leading up to the mega event. The NRAI will hold four trials in April and May to select the Indian shooting team for the Games, and thereafter, the Indian continent will be heading to Munich for the ISSF World Cup.

“Most of the work has been done since last year. In every competitio­n, we were working on little things, making positive changes in their system.

Now, we need to fine tune those things,” Shirur said on the sidelines of the launch of the 14th RR Lakshya Cup 2023, which will be held at the Karnala Sports Academy in Navi Mumbai on March 16 and 17. Around 54 shooters will compete in the tournament and NRAI’s high performanc­e director Pierre Beauchamp will attend the event.

Talking about Olympics preparatio­n, Shirur said: “As national coaches, we are not teaching them how to shoot, but now the focus is on how to perform at a bigger stage. That’s the main thing for us. Selfregula­tion is the most important aspect that we are going to work on because no matter how you train, you still need to go out there and perform.”

Despite high expectatio­ns, India’s shooters had a disappoint­ing run in Tokyo Olympics as none of its campaigner­s, barring Saurabh Chaudhary, could reach the final.

“Tokyo was a completely different ball game and back then, quite a few decisions had to be taken because of the circumstan­ces. We did not have any control over those circumstan­ces due to COVID. But this time, after the Munich World Cup, we will have our camp and the shooters will come back and emotionall­y recover, rejuvenate before the Paris Games,” Shirur said.

“It’s about getting the best out of them. The athletes are in a very good zone, it’s just that we need to sharpen them a bit more.”


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