Anish Bhanwala and Simranpreet Kaur Brar won India’s only medal, a silver, of competition day eight of the International Shooting Sport Federation World Championship Rifle/Pistol in Cairo, Egypt. The duo went down to the experienced Ukrainian pair of Yulia Korostylova and Maksym Horodynets 14-16 in the gold medal match of the 25m Rapid Fire Pistol Mixed Team event.

That took India’s tally to 26 medals including 10 gold, six silver and 10 bronze medals and they continue to remain second behind China on the medal tally.

Anish and Simranpreet shot well throughout the day at the Egypt International Olympic City Shooting Range, topping qualification stage one with a combined 575 after 30 shots each. Stage two, narrowed down to eight from 14 teams, saw them come out on top yet again with a score of 383 out of a possible 400.

The Ukranians came second to follow them into the final with 380. At this stage, Rhythm Sangwan and Vijayveer Sidhu, the second Indian pair in the top eight by virtue of an eighth-place finish in qualification with a score of 560, bowed out in fifth place.

It was a nail-biting final as fortunes kept swinging throughout the 15 five-shot series that it took to reach 16 points. The young Indian pair tied it at 6-6, 9-9, 11-11 and then finally at 14-14, before going down in the 15th and final series. In-fact they had also taken the lead at 8-6 at one point but the Ukrainians came in with the stronger finish.

Anish was particularly good in the final, registering seven perfect fives in the 15-series.

In the other highlight of the day, all three Indians made it through their elimination relays in the Women’s 50m Rifle 3 Positions (3P) competition, which has Paris 2024 Olympics quota places at stake.

Anjum Moudgil shot 587 to finish fourth in relay one. Shooters in this event shoot 20-shots each in the Kneeling, Prone and finally the Standing positions. Sift Kaur Samra shot 585 to place seventh in elimination relay two along with Ashi Chouksey, who shot 581 in the same relay for an 18th place finish.

Ashi Chouksey’s escape from academics unearthed her skill at sport shooting

Sift Kaur Samra targets a step in the right direction

Elsewhere, Esha Singh topped her qualifying round in the 10m Air Pistol Women Junior event with a score of 578, but finished fifth in the ranking round with a score of 199.4. Varsha Singh on the other hand came third in qualifying but missed a medal by a mere 0.2 points, when she finished fourth in the ranking round with a score of 248.9. China’s Yiyao Shen won bronze with 249.1 with China also winning gold and silver in the event.

The Cairo Rifle/Pistol World Championship still has five competition days left and Paris quotas to be won.