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Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju says country has a lot of expectations from shooting in Tokyo Olympics

New Delhi, March 24: Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju on Wednesday (March 24) visited Dr Karni Singh Shooting Range and said India has huge expectations from its world-beating shooting contingent in the Tokyo Olympics. Rijiju claimed that his belief is strengthened by Indian shooters' terrific show in the ongoing ISSF World Cup.

Indian shooters are topping the medals tally by some distance having so far won nine gold, five silver and as many bronze medals for a total of 19 podium finishes in the tournament at Dr Karni Singh Shooting Range.

"We have huge expectations from shooting in Olympics, they have been doing extremely well for a long time now and it has raised the expectations," Rijiju said on the sidelines of the event. "The government is also doing everything possible, making that extra effort in fulfilling the requirements and needs."

Such has been the country's dominance here that it has swept the women's 25m pistol finals with Chinki Yadav winning the gold medal ahead of Rahi Sarnobat and Manu Bhaker after Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar won the men's 50m rifle 3 positions event.

The 23-year-old Yadav prevailed over Sarnobat, 30, 4-3 in a shoot-off after their scores were tied at 32, taking India's gold tally to nine in the event. Bhaker, aged only 19, shot 28 to settle for the bronze medal before being eliminated, leaving her two other compatriots to fight for the top prize.

All three shooters have already bagged their quotas for the Tokyo Olympics. Yadav, who bagged the Olympic quota with a second-place finish at the 14th Asian Championships in Doha in 2019, led the pack after the first 20 targets with a score of 14. She was followed by Bhaker at second with 13.

Rijiju was in attendance at the range on Wednesday and spoke to tournament broadcaster Sony Liv after the women's 25m pistol finals. Last month, Rijiju had said a shorter and convenient quarantine period would be put in place for the World Cup in order to not discourage international shooters from competing at the event.

A month before the tournament, a request was placed before the ministry that shooters be exempted from the hard quarantine of 14 days and foreign delegates be given vaccine shots on priority. As many as 294 shooters from 53 countries are participating in the tournament.

(With PTI inputs)

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Story first published: Wednesday, March 24, 2021, 19:17 [IST]
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