ISSF World Cup: Bronze for Manu Bhaker, Aishwary Tomar ends fourth
Woman pistol ace Manu Bhaker finished third in 25m pistol and Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar was fourth in 50m 3-Positions event on the penultimate day of the shooting World Cup in Bhopal
Manu Bhaker finished third in the four-woman final of the 25m pistol event while Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar ended fourth in the men’s 50m 3-Positions on the penultimate day of the ISSF shooting World Cup being held in Bhopal on Saturday. India were second overall on the medal table, behind powerhouse China.
Bhaker, who couldn't make the final in 10m air pistol, was in much better form in the 25m range, finishing behind Germany's Doreen Vennekamp (594 pts) and China's Du Ziyue (584) in the qualification round. She also aggregated 584, but with fewer 10s than Du. The 21-year-old made it to the medal match with 14 hits out of a possible 20 in the ranking match. Esha Singh, the other Indian in the field, missed the cut with 11 hits.
Bhaker was joined by Vennekamp and the Chinese pair of Du and Xiong Yaxuan in the medal match. Xiong was eliminated after the fourth series where her score of 12 was two shy of Bhaker, assuring the Indian of at least a bronze. At that stage, Bhaker was tied with Du, and with two shots short of Vennekamp, even a gold was not out of reach.
A disappointing fifth series, where she was on target only twice in five attempts dented Bhaker’s chances while Vennekamp and Du scored four hits each. Bhaker's progress hinged on her shooting a perfect five in the next series and her opponents faring badly. That didn’t happen as Vennekamp nailed all her shots and Du scored four times. Bhaker, who shot four in her final series for a total of 20 hits, bowed out with a bronze. This is her first medal of the year, a big boost from the 32nd spot finish in the event at last month's Cairo World Cup.
Vennekamp, who won silver in the 10m pistol event on Wednesday, missed thrice in the eighth and final five-shot series, but eventually took gold, beating Du 30-29.
World No 2 Tomar made a bright start in the 50m 3P event, topping the 60-shot qualification round with a score of 591. However, in the eight-man ranking match that followed, the 22-year-old fell behind China's Du Linshu, seasoned Hungarian Istvan Peni and Swiss Jan Lochbihler. Tomar's drop was largely a function of him producing two mediocre standing rounds where he shot 48.8 and 49.5 while the top three registered at least one 50-point standing series in the first two attempts.
Tomar, who won gold in the event at the Cairo World Cup, scored 405.5 to finish fourth while Du Linshu beat Peni 16-10 in the gold medal match to extend China's lead at the top of the medals table. Lochbihler took bronze with a score of 407.4.China have won 10 medals (6 gold, 2 silver, 2 bronze), followed by India (6 medals) and Germany (2 medals). The final day of the competition will feature women’s 3P and men’s 25m rapid-fire pistol events.