Mehuli Ghosh, Jitu Rai clinch gold at Hague InterShoot

Mehuli Ghosh spearheaded with world class scores as Indian shooters dominated the show at the InterShoot international shooting championship.

Mehuli fired 633.0 in qualification and clinched the air rifle gold medal with a score of 250.8 (File photo).   -  Kamesh Srinivasan

Mehuli Ghosh spearheaded with world class scores as Indian shooters dominated the show at the InterShoot international shooting championship at the Hague, Netherlands on Friday.

On the opening day of the competition, the Commonwealth Games and Youth Olympics silver medallist, Mehuli literally set the range on fire, with a score of 633.0 in qualification in women’s air rifle. The score was 0.4 short of the world record set by Zhu Yingjie of China in the World Cup in Fort Benning last year.

Mehuli followed that up with a brilliant final, as she clinched the gold with a total of 250.8. Interestingly, Mehuli pipped Mandy Mulder of the Netherlands by 0.4 for the gold, and the Dutch girl had shot nearly 10 points less in qualification.

Vinita Bhardwaj, who has been having a fruitful outing in Europe, continued to impress with a qualification score of 631.4, before settling for the fourth place. Olympian Ayonika Paul placed sixth after shooting 628.1 in qualification.

World Championship silver medallist and Asian Games gold medallist, Jitu Rai just about managed to qualify for the men’s air pistol final with a score of 576, but shot an outstanding final to clinch the gold 1.2 point ahead of Julio Almeida of Brazil.

The final looked like the national championship, as Ravinder Singh, Om Prakash Mitharval, Dharmendra Singh and Shahzar Rizvi placed third to sixth respectively.

Men’s air rifle was much better, as Sandeep Singh clinched the gold 3.1 point ahead of Yu Haonan of China. Pankaj Kumar took the bronze, while Saurabh Singh, Deepak Kumar, Vishwajeet Singh and Rahul Lal Chauhan ensured that India grabbed six of eight slots in the final.

The results:

Men:

Air pistol: 1. Jitu Rai 241.9 (576); 2. Julio Almeida (Bra) 240.7 (581); 3. Ravinder Singh 220.9 (584); 4. Om Prakash Mitharwal 199.0 (581); 5. Dharmendra Singh 178.3 (578); 6. Shahzar Rizvi 156.8 (577); 21. Ronak Pandit 565.

Juniors men: 1. Jerome Son (Bel) 237.4 (567); 2. James Miller (Wal) 235.0 (571); 3. Bastian Strack (Ger) 212.3 (566); 5. Deepak Dhariwal 172.1 (563); 6. Milan Chaudhary 148.8 (552).

Air rifle: 1. Sandeep Singh 251.7 (625.3); 2. Yu Haonan (Chn) 248.6 (624.7); 3. Pankaj Kumar 226.8 (621.4); 4. Saurabh Singh 205.9 (623.3); 5. Deepak Kumar 185.0 (627.7); 6. Vishwajeet Singh Jhala 162.8 (624.1); 8. Rahul Lal Chauhan 120.0 (620.8); 28. Ashwani Bhati 598.9.

Junior men: 1. Jon-Hermann Hegg (Nor) 246.3 (623.2); 2. Akshat Seth 242.8 (614.8); 3. Aleksander Teisrud (Nor) 221.2 (613.7); 13. Dharya Goyal 577.5.

Women:

Air pistol: 1. Afaf Elhodhod (Egy) 237.0 (577); 2. Zhang Mengxue (Chn) 236.7 (582); 3. Wang Yifei (Chn) 215.5 (572); 4. P Shri Nivetha 195.3 (574); 12. Gauri Sheoran 557.

Junior women: 1. Karen Quezada (Mex) 233.7 (563); 2. Lucy Thomas (Wal) 229.2 (546); 3. Kari Dougall (Eng) 209.1 (535); 6. Mufaddal Deesawala 141.9 (550).

Air rifle: 1. Mehuli Ghosh 250.8 (633.0); 2. Mandy Mulder (Ned) 250.4 (623.7); 3. Zhang Binbin (Chn) 228.9 (629.8); 4. Vinita Bhardwaj 207.4 (631.4); 6. Ayonika Paul 164.9 (628.1); 21. Rajshree Sancheti 611.9.