National Selection Trials: Shweta pips Rhythm for 10m air pistol gold

Shweta, 32, who is with the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) beat the qualification topper, 15-year-old Rhythm Sangwan (579) by 0.2 point in a thrilling but low-scoring final.

Shweta Singh beat Rhythm Sangwan by 0.2 points in 10m Air Pistol at the Dr. Karni Singh Range in Tughlakabad on Thursday.   -  K. Murali Kumar

Multiple Asian Games medallist Shweta Singh was quite gritty in warding off a challenge from a young brigade and clinching the top place in women’s air rifle in the National shooting selection trials at the Dr. Karni Singh Range, Tughlakabad, on Thursday.

The 32-year-old Shweta, who is with the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) beat the qualification topper, 15-year-old Rhythm Sangwan (579) by 0.2 points in a thrilling but low-scoring final.

The intensity of competition could be gleaned from the fact that the Youth Olympics gold medallist Manu Bhaker, who had won the Olympic quota recently, placed third ahead of Commonwealth Games silver medallist Malaika Goel and Olympian Annu Raj Singh.

The beauty of the sport was also evident in the way the 45-year-old D. Padma of the Railways continued to make waves, as the former hammer throw specialist, made the final and placed sixth above Devanshi Rana and Deepika Patel.

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The charm of competition continued to fascinate the sparse gathering as the 14-year-old Esha Singh beat the 17-year-old Manu Bhaker by 0.9 points for the junior honour. With both the girls resting for the youth final, 15-year-old Saumya Dhyani won the top place in the youth event,
with the best final score of 243.9, as she beat Tejaswani by 3.2 points. Sneha Bhardwaj missed the chance for third place as she lost the tie-shoot against Janhavi Deshmukh.

In the 25-metre rapid fire pistol, there was a good hint for the preparedness of Anish Bhanwala and Adarsh Singh for the season ahead, as they took turns to clinch the top spot among the men and juniors respectively.

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Anish was brilliant as he topped qualification with 590, three points short of the world record. However, Anish was pipped in the junior final by Adarsh 5-2 in the shoot-off after the two were tied on 32-32.

Former World champion Tejaswini Sawant continued to be in good form as she topped the women’s rifle prone event with 620.3, while Nischal pipped Kinnori Konar by 0.4 for the junior honour with a score of 616.8.

The results:

10m air pistol:

Women: 1. Shweta Singh 239.3 (578); 2. Rhythm Sangwan 239.1 (579); 3. Manu Bhaker 217.0 (578).

Juniors: 1. Esha Singh 239.8 (571); 2. Manu Bhaker 238.9 (578); 3. Devanshi Rana 216.8 (572).

Youth: 1. Saumya Dhyani 243.9 (569); 2. Tejaswani 240.7 (565); 3. Janhavi Deshmukh 219.8 (571).

25m rapid fire pistol:

1. Anish Bhanwala 35 (590); 2. Udhayveer Sidhu 27 (583); 3. Vijayveer Sidhu 21 (587).

Juniors: 1. Adarsh Singh 32(5) 584; 2. Anish Bhanwala 32(2) 590; 3. Udhayveer Sidhu 26 (583).

50m rifle prone

1. Tejaswini Sawant 620.3; 2. Nischal 616.8; 3. KC Hema 616.8.

Juniors: 1. Nischal 616.8; 2. Kinnori Konar 616.4; 3. Ashi Chouksey 615.2.

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