Tejaswini on target in rifle 3-position; 14th National title for Arti

ONGC’s Amanpreet Singh celebrated his birthday with a gold medal in men’s air pistol in the Sahara 56th National shooting championship on Friday.

The 25-year-old, who had won the ‘Champion of Champions’ title two years ago, had slipped to the fourth spot at the halfway stage in the final, after having started on par with Omkar Singh and P.N. Prakash with a leading score of 580.

However, Amanpreet found his rhythm and shot an average of 10.4 points on the last five shots to clinch the gold 0.5 point ahead of Jitu Rai of Army, who had jumped up from the fifth place. In fact, Amanpreet trailed Jitu by 0.5 point after nine shots, but shot 10.7 on the last shot to Jitu’s 9.7.

Karnataka’s P.N. Prakash, who had led for the first five shots in the final, settled for the bronze, 0.6 point behind Jitu and 0.4 point ahead of Amit Kumar Pilaniya.

In women’s rifle 3-position event, the world champion in prone, Tejaswini Sawant, capitalised on her two-point lead before the final to prevail by 1.7 points over Raj Chaudhary of Army. Raj Chaudhary shot the best in the final with a total of 98.5, but Tejaswini kept pace with her till the penultimate shot.

“I was happy with the total of 581 owing to the cold conditions though my best has been 588 in the World Cup in Munich in 2009,” said Tejaswini, who had shot 198 in prone, 192 in standing and 191 in kneeling.

Thinking smart

Being smart, Tejaswini brushed aside the thought that she was leading and tackled the final keeping in mind the new rule that would put all the finalists on par at zero from January. She had shots ranging from 8.9 to 10.6 and felt satisfied with her effort.

The prone gold medallist, Deepali Deshpande, shot 572 in making the final, but could not fight for a medal owing to the big difference from the top three, and placed fifth.

In women’s skeet, Arti Singh won her 14th National title, with a total of 70, following rounds of 24, 23 and 23, as she beat defending champion Rashmee Rathore of Andhra Pradesh by three points.

The 33-year-old Arti could have reached her National record of 71, which she had shot in the Lonato World Cup in May when she missed the final in the tie-shoot.

The results:

Air pistol: Men: 1. Amanpreet Singh 679.5 (580); 2. Jitu Rai 679.0 (579); 3. P.N. Prakash 678.4 (580). Juniors: 1. Sarjeet Singh 573; 2. Divgijay Malik 573; 3. Achal Pratap Singh Grewal 573. Youth: 1. Achal Pratap Singh Grewal 573; 2. Ankit 565; 3. Vikas Dhama 562.

Sport rifle 3-position: Women: 1. Tejaswini Sawant 679.2 (581); 2. Raj Chaudhary 677.5 (579); 3. Lajja Gauswami 674.6 (578). Juniors: 1. Anjum Moudgil 571; 2. Tejaswini Muley 565; 3. Priyal Narendra Keni 564.

Skeet: Women: 1. Arti Singh 70; 2. Rashmee Rathore 67; 3. Saniya Sheikh 63. Juniors: 1. Saniya Sheikh 62; 2. Maheshwari Chauhan 43.

More In: Other Sports | Sport