The last day of the season-opening International Shooting Sport Federation World Cup in New Delhi on Wednesday will see the two mixed events take place. India have two pairs competing in both the 10m air rifle and 10m air pistol mixed team events at the Dr Karni Singh Shooting Range.
While there are no Tokyo 2020 Olympic quota places on offer in the event, there will be World Cup medals to be won. India so far has only two medals from this outing – the gold won by Apurvi Chandela (women’s 10m air rifle) and Saurabh Chaudhary (men’s 10m air pistol) – and will hope to end the ISSF World Cup on home soil with a strong finish.
In the 10m air rifle mixed tea event, Chandela and Ravi Kumar, who won the bronze at the Asian Games, will hope for a similarly strong result. Anjum Moudgil and Deepak Kumar will be the second pair in action.
However, all eyes will be on the 10m air pistol mixed team pair of Chaudhary and Manu Bhaker. Both teenagers are among the biggest talents in India and have done well in the mixed format. While Chaudhary has had a golden run, Bhaker finished fifth in sport pistol final and was 14th in the air pistol qualifications. But with their forces combined, they could make a lethal pair. For Bhaker especially, who has endured a tough time in this World Cup, a medal would go a long way in helping her find her footing again.
Heena Sidhu and Abhishek Verma will be the other Indian pair in this event. The former had spoken about how her “overthinking” proved to be critical in the women’s 10m air pistol even and she would have a point to prove on final day of events.
With only one Olympic quota earned out of the 12 that were available, the Indian shooters would now hope to, at the very least, finish with place(s) on the podium.