Emergence of Ganemat Sekhon and Karttiki Shaktawat heartening for shotgun shooting in India - National coach Mansher Singh

20-year-old Ganemat Sekhon winning a bronze medal in skeet at the ISSF World Cup marks another high for India in the sport

By Samrat Chakraborty

Shotgun shooting is on a gradual rise in India. Among the unprecedented 15 shooters from the Indian contingent set to travel for Tokyo 2020, two -- Mairaj Khan and Angad Bajwa -- will represent the country in the shotgun category.

However, national coach Mansher Singh, who has worked closely with some of the finest shooters in the country believes the future of shotgun shooting is bright in India with the emergence of some young talents.

"I think the road ahead for shotgun is very good, especially with the influx of juniors," Mansher told PTI.

A testament to the rise of shotgun shooting in India was the success of Ganemat Sekhon at the ongoing ISSF World Cup in New Delhi. The 20-year-old claimed the bronze medal to become the first Indian woman to take a podium spot in skeet at the mega event.

Though she missed a medal spot, 19-year-old Karttiki Singh Shaktawat finished fourth at the women's skeet event on Sunday.

Ganemat Sekhon (Courtesy: @Media_SAI/Twitter)

Mansher also revealed that he gave Ganemat a pep talk ahead of the final.

"Before the final we had a long talk, was just basically easing her (Sekhon) tension, keeping her relaxed knowing that the build-up to the final can lead you to get a little tense in the situation," he said.

"We don't shoot many finals with people watching. So shooting tends to be a very lonely sport when you are training and even when competing sometimes.

"The main thing was to get them ready to deal with the exposure of people watching them, clapping during the final which could upset the rhythm," Mansher added.

The coach further advised Ganemat to perform at the best of her ability like an artist does during the drama.

"My message to her (Sekhon) was be like a performing artist in a drama, on a beautiful prop and perform to the best of your ability.

"And people will like you for what your performance is, you generate positivity among the crowd which will then reflect and translate into you and then your shooting will also benefit. So the process is in the mind

"She (Shaktawat) has done a great job because she came into the senior team for the first time, she shot in Cairo (World Cup last month) under very tough conditions and came to Delhi at her home range and shot very well," he added.