Elavenil Valarivan, Mehuli Ghosh to headline strong team for junior shooting World Cup

In the competition in Suhl, Germany, from July 12 to 19 that will feature rifle, pistol and shotgun events, 55 countries are scheduled to send 652 shooters. India is sending the largest contingent of 53 members.

Mehuli Ghosh (left) and Elavenil Valarivan have been part of the national team in the women’s section for air rifle.   -  Kamesh Srinivasan

Accomplished shooters Elavenil Valarivan and Mehuli Ghosh, in addition to Manisha Keer and Adarsh Singh, will be part of a strong 53-member Indian team for the junior shooting World Cup scheduled to be held in Suhl, Germany, from July 12 to 19.

While Elavenil and Mehuli have been part of the national team in the women’s section for air rifle, Manisha is part of the trap team. Adarsh has been getting close to winning an Olympic quota place in the men’s rapidfire pistol.

In the competition that will feature rifle, pistol and shotgun events, 55 countries are scheduled to send 652 shooters. That should underline the physical strength of India, as host Germany will field the second biggest contingent of 40.

Russia (36), China (34), the Czech Republic (34), Italy (32), the US (31), Britain (29), France (28), Poland (25) and Japan (20) will be the other countries trying to capitalise on the best exposure for their juniors.

India has reasons to field the strongest squad both in terms of quality and number as it had topped the table last year with 26 medals, including 15 gold. China had won 21 medals, including six gold. Italy, the Czech Republic, Russia, the US, Belarus, France, Latvia, Denmark, Spain, Britain and Slovakia shared the remaining 20 of the 41 gold medals.

The Indian shooters are expected to have a 10-day training camp before they leave for Germany. The schedule has 25m standard pistol for the junior men and women on July 13, followed by free pistol, trap and rifle prone on the second day. The air rifle and trap finals are scheduled for the third day. After days of packed events, the World Cup will conclude with the mixed air pistol and rifle three positions events on July 19.

Most of the shooters are in a competitive mode, especially in rifle and pistol, as they have been shooting the Kumar Surendra Singh Championship apart from the fifth national selection trials.

India topped the medals table in all the three World Cups for men and women this season in rifle and pistol, in Delhi, Beijing and Munich.