The International Olympic Committee has approved the International Shooting Sport Federation’s updated qualification system for the Tokyo Olympics, which could see India add at least one more quota to the 15 secured so far.

India have so far earned a record number of quota places in the qualification cycle that began with the 2018 World Championship in Korea. Shooting is expected to be one of the most successful sports for India at Tokyo Games before the coronavirus pandemic led to a one-year postponement. The Games have been rescheduled for next summer and with it a host of qualifying events’ schedule has also been rejigged.

Gunning for medals: India will have record representation in Olympics shooting at Tokyo

“The allocation of the 12 quota places [one in each individual event] will be done based on the world ranking list of March 31, 2020 and points earned at one ISSF World Cup in Rifle/Pistol and one ISSF World Cup in Shotgun to be held in March-April of 2021,” the ISSF said in a statement. The ISSF has called off all its World Cups this year due to the pandemic.

This could help someone like Anish Bhanwala to secure a quota for himself in the 25m rapid-fire pistol, a category in which India won a silver through Vijay Kumar at the 2012 London Games, said a National Rifle Association of India insider.

“Anish was in the top 10 in the March 31 ranking and all the other shooters above him had already secured their quotas. So, he definitely has a chance.

“And his chances will only increase if he shoots a good score in the World Cup in March-April 2021,” the NRAI insider said.

Though India could not win a quota in trap, Kynan Chenai will take a shot at earning one when the qualifications start again.

The new deadline for Tokyo 2020 Qualification in shooting is June 6, 2021, according to the ISSF.

The apex body further said, “As proposed by the ISSF, the quota places supposed to be allocated at the 2020 European Championship Shotgun in Chateauroux, France, and the European Olympic Qualification Championship in Plzen, Czech Republic, will be allocated at the 2021 European Championship 10m in Lohia, Finland, and at the European Championship 25/50/300m/Shotgun in Osijek, Croatia.”

With PTI Inputs