Manu Bhaker and Saurabh Chaudhary won their third consecutive 10m air pistol mixed team gold at the year’s third International Shooting Sport World Cup in Munich on Thursday. The 17-year-old Indians beat the Ukrainian pair, Olena Kostevych and Oleg Omelchuk, 17-9 in the final.
The duo, who had won the 10m air pistol mixed team gold at the World Cups in Delhi and Beijing earlier this year, topped the qualification table both times.
In the final eight competition, they scored a total of 591 (Bhaker - 294, Chaudhary - 297). In the initial round, they topped the table with a score of 586 (Bhaker - 291, Chaudhary - 295).
In the final clash, the Indian started on a strong note but the experienced Ukrainian duo pushed them to level at 6-6. But the teens stormed to a 12-6 lead, before a split point made it 13-7. The Indians were too good after that, crossing 16 points to win with ease.
The gold medal match was contested under the new mixed team format, which has two teams competing at the same time. The ISSF had decided to change to a system of semi-finals followed by two medal matches with two teams in each match with the winner being the first to 16 points.
Earlier in the day, Anjum Moudgil and Divyansh Singh Panwar beat fellow Indian pair of Apurvi Chandela and Deepak Kumar 16:2 to win the 10m air rifle mixed team gold.
This is India’s fifth gold medal at the ISSF World Cup in Munich and they lead the table with six medals.
On Monday, Saurabh Chaudhary had continued his sensational streak in finals as he shattered the junior and senior world record winning his second gold in 10m air pistol while Rahi Sarnobat sealed a Olympic quota place for India in style as she cruised to victory in the women’s 25m pistol.
On Sunday, Apurvi Chandela (who has already earned a quota place in the 10m air rifle), won her second World Cup gold medal in 10m air rifle.