ISSF World Cup: Yashaswini beats Manu Bhaker to gold, Saurabh Chaudhary settles for silver

Indian shooters won five medals -- four in pistol and one in the rifle event -- at the ISSF World Cup in New Delhi. Yashaswini Singh Deswal bagged the only gold.

By Rahul Venkat
Picture by ISSF

Young Indian shooter Yashaswini Singh Deswal beat Commonwealth Games champion Manu Bhaker to win the women’s 10m Air Pistol gold at the ISSF World Cup in New Delhi on Saturday.

At the Dr Karni Singh Shooting Range, Yashaswini shot 238.8 in the final while Manu Bhaker shot 236.7. Both shooters have already earned quota places for the Tokyo Olympics.

Another shooter Nivetha Paramanantham fell short of making it an all-Indian podium as she finished fourth with Belarus’ Viktoria Chaika winning bronze.

Yashaswini had shot 579 to top the qualifying rounds while Manu Bhaker was close behind with 577.

In the final, Yashaswini began slowly, shooting 50.6 with her five shots while Manu Bhaker began with 51.3.

However, Yashaswini took the lead soon, shooting 10.2, 10.6, and 10.4 with her next three shots to take her score to 100.8 and lead the field. Manu Bhaker managed to rack up 100 going into the elimination rounds.

The Indian duo was the class of the field, with Yashaswini always staying ahead of Manu Bhaker and eventually clinched her second gold medal in ISSF World Cups.

Saurabh misses gold with final shot

In the men’s 10m Air Pistol, Asian Games champion Saurabh Chaudhary won silver while compatriot Abhishek Verma took home the bronze. A third Indian Shahzar Rizvi finished fifth.

Iran’s Javad Foroughi won the gold medal.

Saurabh Chaudhary and Abhishek Verma, both of whom have earned quotas for the Tokyo Olympics, had shot 587 and 583 respectively to top the qualification rounds going into the final.

Saurabh Chaudhary fell behind early in the final, only shooting 99.5 going into the elimination. Abhishek Verma and Foroughi were both ahead of him at that point.

However, the 2018 Youth Olympics gold-medallist came into his own, consistently shooting over 10 to move ahead of Abhishek Verma and became Foroughi’s sole competitor for gold.

After trailing the Iranian for much of the final, Saurabh Chaudhary took the lead in the penultimate round as Foroughi only managed two identical 9.6s.

It all came down to the last shot of the final, as Saurabh Chaudhary shot 9.8 to end with an aggregate of 243.2. Foroughi then took his time and held his nerve to shoot 10.5 with his final shot, taking his aggregate to 243.6 and won gold.

Divyansh settles for bronze

World No.1 Divyansh Singh Panwar won bronze in the men’s 10m Air Rifle, as he shot 228.1 in the final. The other Indian in the fray Arjun Babuta ended fifth with 185.5.

The 18-year-old Divyansh, an Olympics quota holder, was on the backfoot, shooting only 102.6, while both leaders had shot in the 104 range.

Despite shooting an average of 10.3 thereafter, it was not enough as American Lucas Kozeniesky won gold and Istvan Peni of Hungary took silver.

Meanwhile, Anjum Moudgil, the only Indian in the women’s 10m Air Rifle final, could only finish fifth.

Lead photo: ISSF