Sports

Junior shooting World Championships: India finish on top with 43 medals

India won a whopping 43-medals, including all 12 available on October 9, the 11th and final day of competitions, as the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) Junior World Championship Rifle/Pistol/Shotgun concluded at the Las Palmas Shooting range in the Peruvian capital of Lima.

Vijayveer Sidhu, Rhythm Sangwan, Arjun Singh Cheema, and Shikha Narwal were India’s gold medallists on the final day putting India firmly on top of the standings with 17 gold medals.

Pending a clarification sought by the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) from the ISSF, the medals tally was updated on Monday. India now has 16 silver and 10 bronze in addition to the 17 gold medals.

Vijayveer began the sweep with a gold in the Junior Men’s 25M Standard Pistol with his third gold medal of the Championship. His twin brother Udhayveer won silver with 570, the same score as Vijayveer’s but with three lesser inner 10s. Harsh Gupta won bronze with a 566 in a field that was 17-strong.

Then Rhythm Sangwan won her fourth gold of the Championship with a victory in the Junior Women’s 25m Standard Pistol with a score of 573, leaving compatriots Niveditha Veloor Nair (565) and Naamya Kapoor (563) behind in silver and bronze positions.

Then in the 50M Pistol for Junior Men, India’s Arjun Singh Cheema bossed the 16-strong field with a 549 out of 600 with both teammates Shaurya Sarin and Ajinkya Chavan also finishing on the same score. Shaurya was adjudged second and Ajinkya third on inner 10s and count back.

In the final event of the Championship, India’s Shikha Narwal won the Junior Women’s 50M Pistol with a score of 530. Esha Singh was second with 529 while Navdeep Kaur was third with 526.

In all, the Pistol discipline stole a march over the other two for India, accounting for 26 medals of the 43. Shotgun had nine medals while Rifle won eight. Noteworthy performances with the future of Indian shooting in mind, however, came from all three disciplines.

Olympians Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar and Manu Bhaker reiterated their world-class credentials yet again with dominating performances. Manu was the most successful Indian athlete with four gold and one bronze medal while Aishwary smashed the junior world record en route to winning the Junior Men’s 50M Rifle 3 Positions Gold.

In the Shotgun discipline, Ganemat Sekhon in the Junior Women’s Skeet returned with a credible two medals (one gold, one silver) to further enhance her reputation as an excellent future prospect.