Close duels and records galore


Moraad Ali Khan won the men's double trap individual event with a Games record to boot.-M. MOORTHY

THE entire fraternity of shooting stars (not the celestial kind, but the ones with weapons in their hands) assembled at the Hyderabad University campus which was the newly established venue of the Andhra Pradesh Rifle Association shooting range.

Among the best shooters in the country were Manavjit Singh, R.V.S. Rathore, Moraad Ali Khan, Anwar Sultan and others in the double barrel section and A. K. Subbaiah, Hem Raj, Jaspal Rana, Ronak and Ashok Pandit, Samaresh Jung, Mahaveer Singh, Sameer Bandekar and Prakash in the men's small weapons and rifles section and Anjali Vedpathak Bhagwat, Deepali Deshpande, Sushma Rana and Shilpi Singh in the women's section. Probably the only big name missing was Abhinav Bhindra who was away in the U.S.

Set up in a record 38 days, the shooting range included a fully air conditioned 10 metre range and a well equipped 25 metre and 50 metre range. A slight distance away was a trap and skeet range which was fitted out with a state of the art Materelli machines which ejected the `birds' for the shooters to hit. The birds are actually bituminous and plastic disc shaped objects which slice through the air for the marksmen to hit. All stations for the shooters had installed voice activated machines which relayed a signal for the computerised machines to eject the birds.

The competition was marked by some very closely fought out duels and a spate of new national games records. Manavjit Singh Sandhu made a strong impact while setting a new mark in the Trap which kicked off the competition. Manavjit had a score of 145 out of 150 shots. The IOC sponsored shooter incidentally was appearing at the National Games for the first time.

On the same day that Manavjit thrilled the spectators, Anjali Vedpathak was involved in a gripping duel against Deepali Deshpande. Anjali the former Maharashtra shooter now turning out for Andhra Pradesh thanks to the generous prize money announced for medal winners, found that Deepali had practised hard and improved her scores after a hiatus of two years. Deepali's performance in the 10 metre Air Rifle event was agonisingly close losing out to Anjali by the smallest margin possible.

Jaspal Rana also scored a gold in his first event winning the 25 metre Standard Pistol easily but far below his personal best in the event. In the 25 metre centre fire pistol event Jaspal Rana was involved in a three way dead-heat at the conclusion of the round. Jaspal, Ashok Pandit and Mahavir Singh of the Services all came up with scores of 580 but Jaspal's experience in the shoot outs saw him showing steadier nerves and winning the event finaly. Sameer Ambekar with plenty of potential eclipsed Bhindra's old games record in the 10 metre Air Rifle individual event for men.

Moraad Ali Khan got the better of R.V.S. Rathore in the double trap event and in the process etched his name in the record book for the event in the National Games. Rathore who also bettered his previous record had to settle for the second place.

Deepali Deshpande making a comeback after two years won the women's 50m rifle 3-position from Anjali Vedpathak Bhagwat.-K. GOPINATHAN

Sonia Rana, appearing for Andhra Pradesh held off a strong bid from Sonika Manon of Delhi to win the 25 metre sports pistol event.

Samaresh Jung displayed dazzling accuracy to enthral all the shooting enthusiasts assembled at the 10 metre air pistol event. Karnataka's P.N. Prakash found no answer to Samaresh's accuracy and his scores in the title round. He had only one score of below ten which came in his seventh shot registering a 9.2 all other shots were in the 10 plus range making for a terrific performance.

The results:

Trap: 1. Manavjit Singh Sandhu, (Pun, 145.0), 2. Anwar Sultan (Del, 138.0), 3. Zorawar Singh (Pun, 137.0). Team: 1.Punjab (Manavjit Singh, Birender Sodhi, Zorawar Singh) 345, 2. Uttar Pradesh, 3. Delhi.

25m Standard Pistol men's individual: 1. Jaspal Rana (Uta) 570.0, 2. Vivek Singh (Del) 564.0, 3. Ashok Pandit (Mah) 560.0. Team: 1. Uttaranchal (Jaspal Rana (570) Viraj Singh (558), Umesh Chandra (524) 1652, 2. Maharashtra, 3. Services Sports Control Board.

10m Air Rifle (Women): 1. Anjali Vedpathak Bhagwat (AP, 500.5), 2. Deepali Deshpande (Mah, 500.4), 3. Suma Shirur (Mah, 495.2). Team: 1.Maharashtra (Suma Shirur, Deepali Deshpande, Anuja Tere) 1181, 2. Andhra Pradesh, 3. Madhya Pradesh. 10 metre Air Rifle (Men) 1. Sameer Ambekar (Mah) 697.9 (NGR), 2. Gagan Narang (AP) 696.3, 3. Sandeep Tarate (Mah) 692.2. Team: 1. Maharashtra (Sameer Ambekar 594, Sandeep Tarate 589, Vishwajeet Shinde 583) 1766, 2. Delhi 1757, 3. Services Sports Control Board 1751.

25-metre Centre Fire Pistol: 1. Jaspal Rana (Uttaranchal) 580, 2. Ashok Pandit (Mah) 580, 3. Mahavir Singh (SSCB) 580. Note: In the title shots Jaspal scored 145, Ashok Pandit 142 and Mahavir Singh 140, but the scores in the two details are entered in the official records.

25-metre Sports Pistol (Women) 1. Sushma Rana (AP) 666.1, 2. Sonika Manon (Del) 661.4, 3. Sonia Rana (AP) 655.3. Team: 1.Andhra Pradesh (Shilpi Singh 537, Sushma Rana 566, Sonia Rana 558) 1661; 2. Delhi (1631), 3. Services Sports Control Board (1625).

Double Trap (Men's Individual) 1. Moraad Ali Khan (Del 180.0) 2. R.V.S. Rathore (SSCB 179.0) 3. Vikram Bhatnagar (Del, 174.0). Team: 1.Delhi (Mansher Singh 119, Moraad Ali Khan 134, Vikram Bhatnagar 129) 382, 2. Services Sports Control Board 353, 3. Punjab 329.

10-metre Air Pistol: Men: 1. Shamsher Jung (AP) 584 (NGR), 2. P.N. Prakash (Kar) 575, 3. Jaspal Rana (UA) 572. Team: 1. Uttaranchal (Jaspal Rana 572, Subash Rana 569, Umesh Chandra 566) 1707, 2. Maharashtra 1689, 3. Andhra Pradesh 1684. 50 metre Rifle Prone: Team: 1. Services Sports Control Board (T.C. Palangappa 588, A.P. Subbaiah 585, Satgurudas 593) 1766, 2. Tamil Nadu 1751, 3. Maharashtra 1748.

10-metre Air Pistol: Women: 1. Shwetha Chaudhury (Har) 469.7, 2. Shilpi Singh (AP) 466.9, 3. Sushma Rana (AP) 466.8. Team: 1. Andhra Pradesh (Shilpi Singh 374, Sushma Rana 371, Sonia Rana 364) 1109, 2. Uttar Pradesh 1100, 3. Delhi 1088. 50 metre Rifle Prone: Team: 1. Maharashtra (Anuja Tere 584, Deepali Deshpande 588, Suma Shirur 574) 1746, 2. Andhra Pradesh 1742, 3. Madhya Pradesh 1735.

50m Rifle 3-position: Men: 1. A.P. Subbaiah (SSCB) 1254.7 (NGR), 2. Fariduddin (SSCB) 1246.4, 3. Joydeep Bannerjee (Ben) 1236.3. Team: 1. Services Sports Control Board (T.C. Palangappan 1127, A.P. Subbaiah 1161, Fariddudin 1147) 3435, 2. Tamil Nadu 3391, 3. Maharashtra 3360.

50m Rifle 3-position: Women: Deepali Deshpande 675.9, 2. Anjali Vedpathak Bhagwat (AP) 675.1, 3. Raj Kumari (MP) 674.5. Team: Andhra Pradesh (Anjali V Bhagwat 578, Kuheli Gangulee 571, Leena Shirodkar 561) 1710, 2. Maharashtra 1708, 3. Madhya Pradesh 1692.

25m Rapid Fire Pistol: Men: Jaspal Rana (UA) 665.8, 2. Ram Kishan (SSCB) 665.5, 3. Sumeet Sanghavi (TN) 658.6. Team: 1. Services Sports Control Board 1679, 2. Maharashtra 1667, 3. Tamil Nadu 1660.

Free Rifle Prone: 1. Satgurudass (SSCB) 694.7, 2. Vishwajeet Shinde (Mah) 691.7, 3. T.C. Palangappan (SSCB) 691.6. Skeet (Individual) 1. Manavjit Singh Sandhu (Pun) 144.0, 2. Naveen Jindal (Chattisgarh) 140.0, 3. Rahoul Rai (Del) 134.0. Team: Chattisgarh (Naveen Jindal 117, Amardeep Singh Rai 113, Rajpal Singh 110) 340, 2. Punjab 322, 3. Karnataka 316. 50 m free pistol: Individual: Samaresh Jung (AP) 650.3, 2. Amit Kumar (Raj) 644.3, 3. Kamal Singh (Raj) 643.2. Team: Services Sports Control Board (Ved Prakash 545, Mahavir Singh 541, T.K. Sikdar 535) 1621, 2. Rajasthan 1618, 3. Uttaranchal 1607.