Pooja Ghatkar asserted the Indian supremacy against tough Chinese competition by clinching the gold in women’s air rifle in the seventh Asian air gun championship in Kuwait City on Sunday.
The 25-year-old from Pune, Pooja shot 208.8 in the final to beat Du Bei of China by 1.6 point. In a brilliant climax, Pooja, who had led the Chinese by one point after 18 shots in the final, came up with identical 10.7 on the last two shots to outclass Du Bei.
The reigning World and Olympic champion Yi Siling of China, who had also won the gold in the last Asian Games in Guangzhou, was pushed to the third place by 0.2 point by the Du Bei while Pooja had stayed comfortably ahead in the race for the gold.
Pooja, who had finished runner-up to Mampi Das in the last national championship, had qualified in the seventh place with a modest score of 413.1, when Yi Siling had topped 4.1 point ahead. Former national champion Apurvi Chandela failed to make the final by 0.4 point.
The Indian women were pushed to the bronze medal by Mongolia, while China won the gold easily.
In men’s air pistol, in which the Chinese swept all the three medals, Samaresh Jung and Prakash Nanjappa did well to make the final. Jitu Rai missed the final by one point.
The Indian men managed to get the silver behind China which was a class apart as it equalled the world record of 1759.
Men: Air pistol: 1. Pang Wei (Chn) 202.3 (FWR) 585; 2. Wang Zhiwei (Chn) 201.9 (591); 3. Mai Jiajie (Chn) 180.3 (583); 6. Samaresh Jung 119.4 (576); 7. Prakash Nanjappa 98.2 (581); 9. Jitu Rai 575. MQS: Amit Kumar Pilaniya 581.
Team: 1. China 1759 (EWR); 2. India 1732; 3. Saudi Arabia 1716.
Women: Air rifle: 1. Pooja Ghatkar 208.8 (413.1); 2. Du Bei (Chn) 207.2 (415.7); 3. Yi Siling (Chn) 186.2 (417.2); 9. Apurvi Chandela 412.1; 17. Ayonika Paul 410.4.
Team: 1. China 1244.4; 2. Mongolia 1236.3; 3. India 1235.6.