Indian shooters Manu Bhaker and Rahi Sarnobat were placed 5th and 25th respectively after the first round (precision) of women’s 25m pistol qualification at the Tokyo Olympics on Thursday.

In a field of 44 shooters, Bhaker scored 292 after 30 shots on target in the precision round while compatriot Sarnobat aggregated 287 in the qualifications at the Asaka Shooting Range.

The second stage of the qualification – the rapid round – will take place on Friday. Both Indians will be back at 5.30am IST to shoot the second round while the finals are scheduled later on the same day at 10.30am IST.

Serbia’s Zorana Arunovic led the pack with 296 points, followed by Greece’s Anna Korakaki who has 294.

The field is bunched tightly after that with three points separating the next 11 shooters. Bhaker is on the same score as the 10m-pistol gold medallist Vitalina Batsarashkina of Russia and mixed team pistol bronze medal winner Olena Kostevych of Ukraine.

It was a good comeback from 19-year-old Bhaker, who had a rough ride in her first two events. She suffered a weapons malfunction in the individual event qualification and her poor series in stage 2 saw India get knocked out of the mixed team competition.

She regrouped to finish strong in the first qualification. In the third relay, Bhaker had a fine start as the 19-year-old shooter shot back to back 97s in the first two series. With just two 9s in the third, Bhaker accumulated 98 points to climb into the top-5.

Bhaker came back strongly to score five 10s off her last five shots after three points in the second series.

Osijek World Cup gold medallist Sarnobat, who was in the first relay of 10 shooters, started the precision round with a 96 and followed it with a 97.

However, thanks to an 8 and a few 9s, she managed 94 in the final series of precision. Her total in the precision rounds was 287/300 which placed her 7th out of 10 in her relay.

With PTI Inputs