Indian shooters inflated their medal tally on Day 5.

The Indian women shooters have made the nation proud by doing a clean sweep of medals in the 25m Pistol event at the ISSF World Cup in Delhi. In a thrilling finale that went into a shoot-off after the scores were tied, Chinki Yadav clinched gold over Rahi Saranobat while Manu Bhaker had to settle for bronze.

Sarnobat and Chunki started slowly off the gates only registering 1 and 2 respectively after the first five shots. Chinki scored 5 out of a possible 5 in the next round and jumped to the first position while Sarnobat faltered and remained last. Manu Bhaker meanwhile made consistency her key, maintaining the third position.

Rahi picked up the pace after a slow start

Sarnobat had a strong Series 3 where she was 100 percent accurate, allowing her to jump to the third position tied with Manu. The closest competition for the Indians came from Latvian Agate Rasmane who found herself in the first position by a point after series 5. But two rounds later, Rasmane, found herself in fourth with all three Indians occupying medal positions.

The Latvian missed many shots in the next round to get eliminated from the 25 m Pistol event of the ISSF World Cup. Sarnobat held a one point lead over Manu for the second place while Chinki had a solid 27, two above Sarnobat. Manu and Rahi fought heavily in Series 9 and it was the former who came out on top. The 19-year-old had to settle for a bronze medal.

As the last series started Chinki held a one point lead over the more seasoned Sarnobat. The former made two of her 5 shots while Sarnobat made three prompting a shoot-off to decide the winner. Both of them hit the first two and missed the third but Chinki managed to land her fourth hit while Sarnobat missed hers. Both made their fifth shot, allowing Chinki to grab the gold in the event, while the 30-year-old notched a silver in the ISSF World Cup.

Gold in Men’s 50m Rifle 3 positions

Earlier, Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar clinched gold in the Men’s 50m Rifle 3 positions competition at the ISSF World Cup in Delhi. The 20-year-old staved off competition from experienced shooters like Istvan Peni, Steffen Olsen and Sanjeev Rajput to come first in what was a thrilling competition.

The Hungarian Istvan Peni won the silver medal while the Danish shooter Steffen Olsen, who was Aishwary’s closest competition in the beginning stages, had to settle for a bronze. Indian veteran Sanjeev Rajput, who topped the qualifications, had a disappointing performance which saw him finish sixth while another Indian finalist Niraj Kumar finished eighth.

Aishwary and Olsen started brilliantly in the Kneeling position, notching up scores of 155.0 and 154.9 respectively with the next nearest being Finn Aleksi Leppa with 153.3. The slender lead held by Aishwary disappeared in the Prone Position as Olsen shot brilliantly to move to 311.4, 0.9 ahead of the young Indian.

The first five shots in the Standing position widened the gap to 2.6 points. However, Olsen stumbled in the next five shots, only notching 47.9, which pushed him to third while Aishwary took the lead of the contest with a brilliant 52.5. The next series of elimination shots saw Niraj Kumar depart while two rounds later it was Sanjeev’s turn to make a premature exit.

Aishwary meanwhile fended off the challenges from Istvan Peni and Steffen Olsen. However, the fourth round of eliminations saw Olsen come within 0.3 but another horrible shot pushed him back to third and thereby eliminated him. With a comfortable 0.9 lead over World No.1 Istvan Peni, Aishwary shot 10.3 on the final shot, guaranteeing him a top place finish and a well-earned gold medal with 462.6 points.