Osijek: Olympic-bound Rahi Sarnobat displayed sensational form to clinch the women’s 25m pistol gold medal at the ISSF shooting World Cup here Monday. However, it was a disappointing day for teen sensation Manu Bhaker. She ended seventh in the same event. However, Rahi Sarnobat made the entire Indian contingent proud.
Sarnobat’s gold is India’s first in the ongoing edition after the country secured one silver and two bronze medals earlier in the tournament.
The 30-year-old Sarnobat fired a final score of 39 after qualifying second with a total of 591. Her stupendous performance in the final included perfect scores in the third, fourth, fifth and the sixth rounds.
“After I got assurance about the gold, it was more about technicalities for me in the last few series as I wanted to try out a few things. So I was doing that,” Sarnobat said about her stellar performance.
“This competition was absolutely not about performance or medal. I was trying out a few things which I am going to do in the Olympic Games. This is the final competition before that. It was more about trying out things and finalising everything before the Olympics for the last time and that was just that,” Sarnobat added.
Nonetheless, winning a gold here has given Sarnobat the belief that her preparations are on the right track for the Tokyo Games. “…I have to keep working on this up to and after the Olympic Games as well,” she said.
The silver went to France’s Mathilde Lamolle, who scored 31 in the final. Rio Olympics silver medallist in the 10m air pistol, Russian Vitalina Batsarashkina, won bronze with 28 hits, bowing out after the ninth five-shot series.
In the qualification, Sarnobat fired a brilliant 296 in the rapid fire round Monday. Her precision score was an equally impressive 295 Sunday. Bhaker recorded a total of 588 to qualify third after firing a 296 in the rapid fire round Monday following an impressive 292 in the precision round Sunday.
However, she was eliminated early in the final with a disappointing score of 11, losing a shoot-off to Bulgaria’s Viktoria Chaika. Bhaker had earlier teamed up with Saurabh Chaudhary for the 10m air pistol mixed team silver. She had earlier clinched the women’s 10m air pistol team bronze with Sarnobat and Yashaswini Deswal. Before that, Chaudhary had won the men’s 10m air pistol individual bronze medal.