Olympian and one of India’s most successful shooters Manu Bhaker secured India’s 11th Paris 2024 Olympics quota place in shooting, finishing fifth in the women’s 25m Pistol at the on-going 15th Asian Shooting Championship in Changwon, Korea.
Bhaker shot 24 in the final, bowing out in a shoot-off to miss out on yet another international medal. Iran’s Haniyeh Rostamiyan finished second, spoiling a Chinese medal sweep as the powerhouse nation took all the other spots from one to four.
Given China could only claim one quota and Haniyeh already had hers secured earlier, the second Paris spot was clinched by the Indian.
Before bowing out, Bhaker was often in the top two positions before a score of two and three in the seventh and eighth series saw her go into a shoot-off with Zhao Nan of China for fourth position. She missed out but the quota had already been secured.
“The aim was obviously the quota, because there are few chances left to win them after this,” she said after the event. “So yes, I am happy that I have won the quota but a podium finish would have been better. I have been working on a few improvements and I feel I am on the right track but will need to work even harder from here.”
Earlier she had topped the qualification stage with a strong 591 even as teammates Esha Singh and Rhythm Sangwan finished 17th and 23rd with scores of 579 and 576 respectively.
India picked up four more medals, all silvers, on the day, as the trio placed second in the 25m pistol team event while Divyansh Singh Panwar and Ramita Jindal in the 10m air rifle mixed team also lost out 12-16 to a Chinese pair in their gold medal match. Panwar and Jindal had also shot well to top their qualification round with a combined score of 631.1.
Simranpreet Kaur Brar also won a double silver in the final medal event of the day, the junior women’s 25m pistol. First, she teamed up with Megana Sadula and Tejaswini to win the team competition with a combined total of 1728 to finish behind China.
She then shot 28 in the final to finish behind gold medal winner Liang Xiaoya of China in the individual final.