16 Gold Medals: India shined through young shooters

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The total of 22 medals; 16 gold, 4 silver, and 2 bronze are bagged by the shooters in this 4-edition series of the world cup. The mixed-gender event has turned out to be the game-changer for India.

Until 2018, in a total of 33 years, there were only 12 gold medals were won by rifle and pistol shooters of India. The history turned itself this year when 16 gold medals were brought by these young shooters in a single year.

The young Indian shooters bagged a total of 22 medals; 16 gold, 4 silver, and 2 bronze when this 4-series world cup concluded and there was no country even near this figure. They also won 9 places in quota for the Olympics 2020 which is going to be hosted by Tokyo.

ISSF is the organization that handles and organizes this shooting world cup. ISSF stands for International Shooting Sports Federation. ISSF introduced the mixed-gender events in the world cup last year and this has turned out to be the game-changer for Indian athletes.

Manu Bhaker and Saurabh Chaudhary must have completed their career slam if it was there in this sports. This is not at all easy to win this many golds in sports in which rules can change in a blink of an eye. This duo has now won the gold in consecutive 4th year, starting from Delhi, then Beijing, Munich, and finally in Rio world cups in 10-meter air pistol event by defeating Abhishek Verma and Yashaswani Deswal by 17-15 on Monday.

The 10-meter air rifle event was also won by India and Apurvi Chandela and Deepak Kumar won the gold in this segment.

We talked to the athletes, and answering to the question that what all has changed in shooting in all these years, Manu, 17, told us that the competition is getting stiffer day by day back here in the country and it helped a lot in the improvement. He added that in the past couple of years, so many young Indians joined and are still joining, so to maintain our spots in the squad, we have to consistently practice shooting on a daily basis.

Manu also believes that there is no point in taking big breaks from the practice, as the older generation was used to take long breaks in order to avoid burnouts. But these younger ones don’t believe in this. She also added that there are 24 hours in a day and practicing for 4 hours daily won’t cause the burnout for me. Manu belongs to Haryana, India.

The second world rank holder, Abhishek Verma, said that there is a lot of improvement seen when we write down each and everything during our practice. All the things we did well or couldn’t do well, I jot down them for keeping in mind and improve those points later. Verma won the 10-meter air rifle round in Beijing and Rio world cup.

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