National Shooting Championship: Maheshwari Chauhan retains women’s skeet title

Rajasthan’s Maheshwari Chauhan retained her women’s skeet title at the 62nd National Shooting Championship Competitions (NSCC) for shotgun events on Monday.

Maheshwari Chauhan after winning the women's skeet title at the National Shooting Championships in Jaipur on Monday.   -  Special Arrangement

Maheshwari Chauhan defended her crown against tough competition in women’s skeet in the 62nd National Shotgun championship at the JDA Range on Monday.

After qualifying in the second place with 115 out of 125, five points behind Simran Preet Kaur Johal who went on to clinch the junior gold, Maheshwari shot resolute to pip Ganemat Sekhon 52-51 in the final.

Interestingly, in the last national championship in Delhi, Maheshwari had won the tie-shoot 2-1 against Ganemat after the two were tied on 50 in the final.

READ: Simran Preet Kaur Johal takes lead in women’s skeet

“I had to stay strong and focused right till the last shot. Becoming a National champion is always a good feeling and retaining the title definitely feels very special. I am happy to bring the gold for Rajasthan year after year,’’ said Maheshwari, who had been training at her home range in Jalore, about 500 kilometres from Jaipur, for the last two months in preparation for the National championship.

Having been able to overtake Simran, a second year Law student from Punjabi University, Patiala, who topped qualification and ended up with the bronze, Maheshwari observed that the final was a different game.

“Honestly, after the shaky start, I wasn’t as confident of winning the gold. But, in a sport like shooting, anyone who gets stronger towards the end takes it all,’’ said Maheshwari, who has been focused on shooting, with sound guidance from Mansher Singh, after graduating from Lady Shri Ram College.

“Mansher pushes his athletes in the best way. He doesn’t help me technically, but in shooting, the mental game is the most important,’’ Maheshwari remarked.

It was a courageous performance by Simran, who was able to follow up the senior bronze, with the junior gold, as she beat Parinaaz Dhaliwal 55-51. Simran also had the distinction of winning both the women’s and junior team gold medals for Punjab for a rich collection.

“I feel proud to have shot a national record and becoming the National junior champion. I made some little mistakes and thus ended up with the women’s bronze. I will try to correct in the future competitions, and make India proud’’, said Simran, who expressed all credit to her father Narinder Singh Johal.

“It is God’s grace and the immense support of my parents who were like my backbone that made it possible to shoot such fabulous results. My father is not a shooter, but he is the one who helped me make it happen. I owe it coach Amardeep Singh Rai who gave me the foundation in the sport at the start’’, said Simran.

The results

Skeet

Women: 1. Maheshwari Chauhan 52 (115); 2. Ganemat Sekhon 51 (111); 3. Simran Preet Kaur Johal 41 (120).

Junior women: 1. Simran Preet Kaur Johal 55 (120), 2. Parinaaz Dhaliwal 51 (111); 3. Darshna Rathore 40 (108).