A new guard has started to find its feet in the international shooting world, as a young Indian contingent won seven medals at the recently concluded ISSF World Cup in Bhopal.

This was the first time the major shooting event had taken place in the Madhya Pradesh capital, hosted at the MP Shooting Range, with the Indians claiming one gold and silver each along with four bronze medals – second behind China’s tally of eight gold, two silver and two bronze.

As the race for Paris 2024 quotas starts to heat up, a new wave of Indian shooters have started to hit their mark in preparation for the next Olympic cycle. So much so that the oldest Indian medal winner at Bhopal was 22-year-old Narmada Raju, who won bronze in the mixed air rifle event along with 19-year-old Rudrankksh Patil.

Meet Rudrankksh Patil, India’s 10m air rifle world champion who loves to research

However, there is still a long way to go, especially when it comes to catching up to the Chinese grip of the sport.

(Courtesy: ISSF)

Here’s a look at how the medals were won:


Sarabjot Singh was the only Indian to win a gold medal at the World Cup – his first ever medal at this level of competition. And he did so in sublime fashion.

In the gold medal match against veteran shooter Ruslan Lunev of Azerbaijan, he came up with a clean sweep 16-0 win, securing the medal with a perfect 10.9 shot.

The 21-year-old had topped the ranking match with a score of 253.2, with Lunev trailing by 0.3 points. The Ambala-lad had finished second in the qualification round with a score of 585, the same as Shiva Narwal who led through more inner-10 shots than Singh (30 to 27). But since Narwal was shooting under Ranking Points Only rules, meaning he was not eligible to compete in the final, Singh was officially the top marksman. And he carried that form with him through the day to win gold in the first medal event of the competition.

He would, however, not be the only Indian on the podium of that event as Varun Tomar claimed bronze.


India’s only silver medal came on the second day of the competition in the mixed air pistol team event. The pair of 19-year-old Rhythm Sangwan and Tomar teamed up to finish second in the qualification round, with a combined score of 581, to take them through the gold medal match.

But they endured a slow start, with China’s Wei Qian and Jinyao Liu taking a strong 14-4 lead. That’s where the Indians shifted gears and started to find their range, winning the next seven points on the trot before eventually losing out 17-11 to take the silver.

This was Tomar’s second medal of the competition.


Tomar had officially finished 11th in men’s 10m air pistol event’s qualification round. But since three shooters placed ahead of him were competing under RPO, he was the last of eight to move through to the final. There he stayed in the hunt for a podium spot and finished with a final score of 250.3, comfortably ahead of fourth placed Jason Solari of Switzerland (249.6).

On Saturday, 21-year-old Manu Bhaker won her senior first World Cup medal since Osijek 2021, claiming bronze in the women’s 25m pistol event. Bhaker had a slow start in the final medal match, shooting just 2 and being placed fourth out of the four competitors. But she recovered just in time, playing a perfect series in the fourth to overtake Yaxuan Xiong of China to jump into third position and earn a spot on the podium.

In the men’s 10m air rifle event, World Championship winner Rudrankksh Patil finished fifth in the qualification round before scoring 262.3 in the final to finish with the bronze. He once again showed his mettle by climbing through the ranks after a slow start, with a stunning series of shots between No 14 and No 23.

This was his second medal of the competition though. A day earlier, the 19-year-old paired up with Narmada to win bronze in the mixed air rifle event.

On the last day of the event, 21-year-old Sift Kaur Samra clinched her first ever individual event World Cup medal by winning bronze in the women’s 50m 3-Position rifle event. She finished fifth in qualifying, with a score of 588, but held her nerve in the final to finish third with a score of 403.9.

Near misses

There were a few close shaves though, as Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar and Ramita finished fourth in the men’s 50m 3-Position rifle and women’s 10m air rifle event respectively.

Meanwhile the men’s 25m rapid fire pistol event was the only discipline in which an Indian did not reach the final round.

The next rifle/pistol World Cup is scheduled to take place next month in Lima, Peru.

India's medallists

Medal Event Shooters
Gold Men's 10m air pistol
Sarabjot Singh
Silver Mixed 10m air pistol
Rhythm Sangwan and Varun Tomar
Bronze Men's 10m air pistol
Varun Tomar
Bronze Mixed 10m air rifle
Narmada Raju and Rudrankksh Patil
Bronze Men's 10m air rifle
Rudrankksh Patil
Bronze Women's 25m pistol
Manu Bhaker
Women's 50m 3-positions rifle
Sift Kaur Samra