Despite making to the finals, Om Prakash Mitharwal could not produce his best as he finished 7th in the Men's 10m Air Pistol of the ISSF World Cup Rifle in Munich on Friday. Meanwhile, his compatriots Shahzar Rizvi and Jitu Rai shot scores of 579 and 577 to finish 12th and 28th respectively.
Om Prakash Mitharwal, the 22-year old, who was competing in only his third World Cup, ended the campaign being the only Indian to qualify for the final in the 10m air pistol at Munich. His score of 582 was the highest score in World Cup qualifiers, which was good enough to place him seventh on the tally. At the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast this year, he shot a score of 584 to top the qualifiers and went on to win bronze while his compatriot Jitu Rai, who had a poor outing in Munich World Cup, won the gold medal.
On the other hand, Shahzar Rizvi, who had won the gold and silver in the World Cups this season in Guadalajara and Changwon respectively, shot 579 and missed the final by one point. On the other hand, Jitu Rai could only score 577 and both of them went on to finish 12th and 28th respectively.
Eventually, in the competition, Oleh Omelchuk of Ukraine won the event in a world record effort of 243.6, ahead of German Rio Olympic champion Christian Reitz and Chinese Qigong Pu.
In women’s 25-meter sports pistol, World Cup gold medallist Rahi Sarnobat shot 577 and missed the final by five points. Heena Sidhu was one point behind and pushed to the 34th place among 94 shooters.
The 27-year-old Rahi Sarnobat, who finished 30th in the qualifying stage of the 25m pistol event, was the highest among the three Indians competing. Despite not making it to the finals, she put up a strong score in the rapid-fire stage of the competition, shooting 295 out of 300. Only three in the entire field of 95 shooters could better that score. Her tally also included a perfect 100 series, making her one of only 12 in the field of 95 to notch that score.
In the Men's 50m Rifle 3 Positions event, seasoned Sanjeev Rajput shot 1176 in qualifying to finish 16th, while youngsters Swapnil Kusale and Akhil Sheoran shot 1171 and 1160 to end in 33rd and 70th positions respectively.
Ravi Kumar, Deepak Kumar, and Arjun Babuta will carry Indian hopes of a medal in the Men's 10m Air Rifle final on Saturday (May 26).
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