National Shotgun Championship: Angad takes gold, silver for Mairaj

The women’s gold was won by former champion Saniya Sheikh who pipped Areeba Khan 10-9 in the shoot-off after the two were tied on 55 in the final.

Back, L - R: Mairaj Ahmad Khan, skeet champion Angad Vir Singh Bajwa and Gurjoat Singh pose with their medals.   -  Kamesh Srinivasan

Angad Vir Singh Bajwa and Mairaj Ahmad Khan lit up the proceedings yet again with a world-class fare as they won gold and silver in men’s skeet in the 63rd National Shotgun Championship at the Dr. Karni Singh Range in Tughlakabad on Friday.

Olympian Mairaj was like a marathon runner as he shot a world record score of 125 out of 125 over three days, but Asian champion Angad sprinted to the finish by repeating his world record score of 60 out of 60 in a spectacular final.

The two world records will not be ratified as the international federation considers only a select bunch of international competition for that purpose, but for the shooting fraternity at the venue, it was a delight to follow the brilliant fare.

Mairaj dropped two birds in the later part of the final, after three of the six had been eliminated.

“Mairaj is a tough nut crack as it is his home range. Once I get into the final, I knew I will get my chance. He pushed me to shoot my best’’, said Angad, who had shot the world record 60 in winning the Asian Clay championship earlier in the season.

Interestingly, Angad had beaten Mairaj in the shoot-off for the gold in the recent Asian Championship in Doha, in which the two won the last Olympic quota places for the country for Tokyo 2020.

Angad who was pushed to the third place in qualification after being tied on 123 with Gurjoat Singh, in the shoot-off, praised his Punjab teammate for a superb performance.

Abhay Singh Sekhon, Amrinder Singh Cheema and Mohd. Sheeraz Sheikh were the others to make the final, while Smit Singh and Rajveer Singh Gill lost the shoot-off after being tied on 121 with Sheeraz.

The women’s gold was won by former champion Saniya Sheikh who pipped Areeba Khan 10-9 in the shoot-off after the two were tied on 55 in the final. It was a dramatic climax for Saniya after she made the final in the sixth place, beating defending champion Maheshwari Chauhan in the shoot-off after the two were tied on 112.]

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Areeba Khan, women's skeet champion Saniya Sheikh and Darshna Rathore pose with their medals   -  Kamesh Srinivasan

 

Darshna Rathore won the bronze ahead of Asees Chhina, the qualification topper Ganemat Sekhon (119) and former champion Rashmmi Rathore.

Ganemat managed to climb to the junior silver behind Parinaaz Dhaliwal, who shot 54 in the final, despite not releasing the trigger on three targets. Areeba Khan was tired after the women’s final and slipped to the fourth place behind Darshna, while Asees Chhina and Sanjana Sood placed fifth and sixth.

Punjab swept all the medals in the junior men’s skeet, through Abhay Singh Sekhon who shot an impressive 58 in the final, Rajveer Singh Gill and Gurnihal Singh Garcha.

In fact, Punjab swept all the four team gold medals as well.

The results

Skeet

Men: 1. Angad Vir Singh Bajwa 60 (123); 2. Mairaj Ahmad Khan 58 (125); 3. Gurjoat Singh 46 (123).

Team: 1. Punjab 364; 2. Uttar Pradesh 361; 3. Haryana 339.

Junior men: 1. Abhay Singh Sekhon 58 (122); 2. Rajveer Singh Gill 52 (121); 3. Gurnihal Singh Garcha 44 (117).

Team: 1. Punjab 360; 2. Madhya Pradesh 328; 3. Rajasthan 302.

Women: 1. Saniya Sheikh 55(10) 112; 2. Areeba Khan 55(9) 117; 3.Darshna Rathore 45 (117).

Team: 1. Punjab 338; 2. Rajasthan 334; 3. Telangana 312.

Junior women: 1. Parinaaz Dhaliwal 54 (111); 2. Ganemat Sekhon 53 (119); 3. Darshna Rathore 44 (117).

Team: 1. Punjab 331; 2. Rajasthan 310; 3. Telangana 291.

Veterans: 1. Rajah Rajagopal Tondaiman 113; 2. Gusti Noria 105; 3. DP Savya Sachi 103.