Indian Shooters Saurabh Chaudhary and Aishwary Pratap secure Olympic berth amidst Coronavirus woes!


The Coronavirus pandemic may have caused major disruptions in a number of sport fixtures in the country, but Indian shooters Saurabh Chaudhary and Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar had their bulls eye undisturbed. At the Olympic team shooting selection trials qualification in New Delhi on Wednesday, the two landed marvellous performance in the men and women combined Air Rifle trials, topping the charts in their respective categories and securing their entries for the main event in Tokyo.

Image Courtesy: Sportstar/ISSF

As the 2020 ISSF World Cup in Delhi had to be postponed due to the virus outbreak in the country, the The National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) had decided to go ahead with a trials qualifier at the Dr. Karni Singh Range in Tughlakabad yesterday.

Saurabh Chaudhary, competing in the 10 metre air rifle category, totalled a stunning score of 588, three more than second place Abhishek Varma. The 17 year old from Meerut, who previously secured a gold at the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires, has earned his maiden Olympic berth.

Back in January, the teenage sensation shooter secured a gold at the 63rd National Shooting Championship. In 2018, Saurabh made history in 2018 in Jakarta Palembang as the youngest Indian shooter to bag a gold at the Asian Games, aged 15.

The youngster also secured a total of six gold medals at the 2019 ISSF World Cup events, two in 10 metre category and four in Mixed Team category.

Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar, the 2019 Asian Shooting Championships bronze medal winner finihsed the top of the charts in the 50 metre rifle 3 positions event. Clocking scores of 393 kneeling, 393 prone and 392 standing, making an aggregate of 1178, Pratap finished ahead of second position  Anjum Moudgil with 1174 points, and Tejaswini Sawant with points 1170, the latter who is an Olympic quota place holder.

The 19 year old won a gold at the 2019 ISSF Junior World Cup in Suhl, Germany, and also secured a bronze at the 2019 Asian Airgun Championships in Taoyuan, Taiwan, competing in the 10 metre category.

Despite the Coronavirus outbreak causing several major sporting events to face postponement, the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics is still planned to go ahead as scheduled, starting on 24th July in the capital of Japan.

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