Sarabjot Singh in the men’s and Esha Singh and Divya TS in the women’s 10m air pistol finals will lead India’s challenge on the opening day of the prestigious season-ending ISSF World Cup Final here on Tuesday.
A 12-member contingent is representing India in the annual tournament, which is being held for the first time in four years thanks to problem with scheduling following the COVID-19 pandemic.
A shoot-out amongst the top 15-ranked international shooters, the World Cup Final crown the shooter of the year in each of the 12 Olympic disciplines across the rifle, pistol and shotgun categories.
The competitors will take aim at the Lusail Shooting Range.
“This is an important international competition happening after four years where the best shooters of the year come together for a matchup. So naturally, I would like to perform well in the event,” said Sarabjot after pre-event training under coach Samaresh Jung.
Esha, currently ranked 10th in the world in women’s air pistol, also shared her thoughts after training.
“I am excited as this is my first world cup final and some of the top shooters of the world and of all time are competing. I will try and end the year on a high.”
Among the top names that Sarabjot will have to contend with will be the likes of world number one and Tokyo silver medallist Damir Mikec of Serbia, reigning world champion Bowen Zhang of China, experienced Turkish pistol ace Ismail Keles and five-time Olympian and Slovakian veteran Juraj Tuzinsky.
Esha and Divya in the women’s air pistol will be up against the likes of world number one and Rio Olympic champion Anna Korakaki of Greece, Tokyo gold medallist and reigning world champion Jiang Ranxin of China and Serbian legend Zorana Arunovic, among others in the 15-strong field.
Shotgunners Prithviraj Tondaiman and Ganemat Sekhon, who made the cut in the men’s trap and women’s skeet respectively, also hit the Lusail Shotgun ranges on Monday. They begin their qualification rounds on Wednesday.
A total of 179 athletes from 12 countries are participating in the tournament.
INPUT ( PTI )