Beats Raj Chaudhary in the 45-shot climax by 2.3 points

Elizabeth Susan Koshy beat a strong field to win the women’s rifle 3-position gold in the 57th National shooting championship at the Dr. Karni Singh Range, Tughlakabad, on Wednesday.

In a dramatic final, in which Anjali Bhagwat (580) the leader got eliminated early, as she had missed 10 points for not shooting the 15th shot in prone on time, the 19-year-old from Kochi shot 452.0 in the 45-shot climax to beat the prone gold medallist Raj Chaudhary by 2.3 points.

“It was great to be just part of such a field that had Olympians and world-level medallists. I had no expectations, and just wanted to do my best. It is a good beginning for me as it is going to be a big season,” said Elizabeth.

Big breakthrough

Elizabeth had competed in the World Cups in Changwon and Fort Benning earlier this season in air rifle, but it was a big breakthrough for Elizabeth in the 50-metre event.

Army’s Raj Chaudhary said that she had learnt a lot from the match, in which she caught up more than two points on the last five shots by performing the best in the standing position.

Rajkumari Rathore, who won the Arjuna award this year, took the bronze ahead of World Cup silver medallist Lajja Gauswami.

Former national champion Meena Kumari, Tejaswini Muley and Vedangi Virag Tulzapurkar were placed fifth to seventh in that order, while the prone world champion Tejaswini Sawant was ninth on 567. Defending champion Deepali Deshpande had to settle for the 20th place on 557.

Shagun in good form

In women’s trap, Olympian Shagun Chowdhary was in fantastic form in the ‘single shot’ final as she outclassed Varsha Tomar 12-9. Earlier, Shagun had shot 14 out of 15 in the semifinals.

“I had trained well for the final. I knew it was important in the new format in which all start on zero.

“The last national championship was disastrous for me, and I am happy with the good start this time,” said Shagun.

Defending champion Shreyasi Singh who had topped the qualifiers with a score of 67, one point ahead of VarshaTomar, had a forgettable time as she logged a mere six points in the semifinals, the least among the six, and failed to make the medal match.

However, she compensated for it by winning the Beretta Cup later in fading light, by beating Varsha Tomar 5-4 in the tie-break after the two had tied on 13 in the climax. Both had shot 11 in the semifinals earlier. In fact, Shreyasi missed two chances to seal the issue but clinched it the third time.

The men’s trap competition became unwieldy due to fog and only the third round was completed on the third day as the competition looked set to reach the fifth day. Darius Chenai continued to lead with 74 out of 75 and one point behind were Manavjit Singh Sandhu, Zoravar Singh Sandhu and Prithviraj Tondaiman.

The results: Junior men: 25m sports pistol: 1. Samarjit Singh 571; 2. Manpreet 570 (48); 3. Neeraj Kumar 570 (47). Women: Rifle 3-position: 1. Elizabeth Susan Koshy (Ker) 452.0 (573); 2. Raj Chaudhary 449.7 (573); 3. Rajkumari Rathore 437.1 (573).

Juniors: 1. Elizabeth Susan Koshy 573; 2. Anjum Moudgil 567; 3. Apurvi Chandela 563.

Trap: 1. Shagun Chowdhary 12 (14) 65; 2. Varsha Tomar 9 (11) 66; 3. Shikha Bhaduria 9 (8) 62; 4. Seema Tomar 7 (8) 62.

Juniors: 1. Varsha Varman 56; 2. Anam Basit 56; 3. Malika Wig 55.

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