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Srisha shoots her way to gold and glory

Rayan Rozario
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“I worked hard for it and I am happy it paid off”

When M. Srisha shot a triple gold in her maiden State championship in Madurai in August this year quite a few eyes popped out in surprise with her brilliant effort. But the little girl chose not to get carried away. She knew it was not enough. But today she is quite elated after having clinched the gold in the 10m open sight air rifle in the 16{+t}{+h}All India Kumar Surendra Singh inter-school shooting championship at the Balewadi Shooting Range in Pune last week.

“I worked hard for it and I am happy it paid off. I feel really proud of having brought the gold and, with it, some cheer to share with my family and friends,” said the 15-year-old class XI student of Shree Sarasswathi Vidhyaah Mandheer in Mettupalayam.

New record

Srisha shot a 343 for the gold and a new record. It was a great effort considering the fact that there was a new rule change.

“At the State championship I used the compressed air rifle but in the all India event it was with a spring rifle. We did practice with it much in advance but the performance certainly took a slight dip,” she said.

“I could have definitely done much better with the compressed air rifle but I have no complaints as I have still managed to land with a gold and a new record,” she added.

Srisha’s record breaking effort was watched by her grandmother. “She was thrilled with my effort. I could not hide my happiness either and I quickly called my parents to convey the news. They had no words to express as well,” she said.

Srisha believes she has the ability to do even better. “I do have the quality in me. I am not saying this out of overconfidence. I know the hours of work I put in every day. I know the kind of support that I draw from my parents, the Coimbatore Rifle Club and its members, S.S. Thatte [Commander and Officer in-charge of the Navy shooting squad], my teachers and friends.”

“She is an exceptional talent. I see a future national champion in her. And, she is heading in the right direction as well,” said Mr. Thatte.

She agrees that the State championship gold haul was the turning point of her life. “I carried it on from there.”

Srisha will now train her guns in peep sight. “I need to start my homework all over again but I really do not mind because it is only peep sight which can take me to the Olympics.”

First meet

“I have already fixed my target [380 and above] and I am working accordingly. My first meet in peep sight will be the State championship in my hometown [Coimbatore] next year. I want to do something out of the box then. I believe I can do it,” she added.

I do have the quality in me. I am not saying this out of overconfidence. I know the hours of work I put in every day.


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