Shotgun team selection: Tondaiman going great guns

After having shot 124 out of 125 in the National championship, Prithviraj shot scores of 121, 119 and 119 in the three trials.

With only three best scores being counted for the averages out of the four, and with bonus points for figuring among the top three in each of the four events, Prithviraj could reach an overall average above 121.   -  Special Arrangement

Prithviraj Tondaiman emerged the clear leader among the trap shooters at the end of the selection trials in Jaipur.

After having shot 124 out of 125 in the National championship, Prithviraj shot scores of 121, 119 and 119 in the three trials. With only three best scores being counted for the averages out of the four, and with bonus points for figuring among the top three in each of the
four events, Prithviraj could reach an overall average above 121.

Kynan Chenai who won the national championship and the former world champion Manavjit Singh Sandhu had an aggregate of 357 from the three best scores without considering the additional fractions for the top three placings. They were tied with Zoravar Singh Sandhu on 357, even though the latter skipped the third trial half way through competition.

The decimals could pull Kynan and Manavjit into the team along with Prithviraj for the first three World Cups to be staged in Acapulco, Al Ain and Changwon in March, April and May respectively.

READ: National shotgun selection trials: Prithviraj Tondaiman takes top spot in men’s trap

‘’I could have skipped the fourth trial, and that would have helped me retain a score 121 for the next cycle. But, I thought a score of 121 was below my standard. I wanted to improve, but could not be at my best physical shape owing to external factors, during the third
trial’’, said Prithviraj, quite keen to step up the quality of his shooting.

Asian Gams silver medallist Lakshay Sheoran did win the bronze medal in the national championship behind Kynan and Prithviraj, but overall his low qualification scores, ranging from 112 to 118 did not help his case.

In women’s trap, Sahgun Chowdhary and Rajeshwari Kumari looked to be far ahead of the rest, while national champion Varsha Varman could pip World Cup silver medallist Seema Tomar for the third spot in the team.

In men’s skeet, Olympian Mairaj Ahmad Khan with impressive qualification scores of 122, 119 and 123 in the national championship followed by the first two trials stayed in the lead, marginally ahead of Sheeraz Sheikh. National champion Angad Vir Singh Bajwa, Smit
Singh, Anantjeet Singh Naruka and Gurjoat Singh could be fighting for the third spot in the squad.

In women’s skeet, Ganemat Sekhon was ahead of the pack as she shot better in the three trials, after 111 in the National championship. National champion Maheshwari Chauhan also looked to have ensured her berth in the team.

Former national champion Rashmmi Rathore and Simranpreet Kaur Johal who had shot an impressive 120 out of 125 in the national championship on way to the bronze medal among the women, and the gold among the juniors, could be fighting for the third spot in the team.

Even though the selection policy is very clear and based on simple arithmetic, the selection committee will ratify the calculations and announce the team soon.