India shooter Manu Bhaker geared up for the Tokyo Olympics 2020 with an emphatic performance at the National Shooting Trials. On Tuesday, the 17-year-old shooter bagged gold in the 25m pistol event of the women’s and junior categories. Having already sealed an Olympics quota in the 10m event, Bhaker can now push for the 25m quota as one spot is still up for grabs.
Bhaker had a chance to qualify in the 25m category but a weapon malfunction at the Munich World Games last years extended her wait. Two shooters can qualify from India for the Olympics with Rahi Sarnobat having already done her bit.
Bhaker, on Tuesday, started poorly and was way off the mark before shooting a 32.0 to ace the senior category and doubled her gold tally shooting another 30 to win the junior title. Manu led the qualification in the women’s category after shooting 584 and did an encore in junior category to make a strong statement.
Abhidnya Ashok Patil of Maharshtra (28.0) and Gauri Sheoran of Haryana (573, 24.0) came second and third, whereas in the junior category, finishing behind Bhaker were Rhythm Sangwan (27.0) and Vibhuti Bhatia. All three shooters hail from Haryana.
Bhaker is expected to be one of India’s biggest hopes when the Tokyo Games kick off in 2020. Bhaker, a Commonwealth Games Gold Medallist, secured a berth at the Tokyo Olympics through a good performance in the shooting World Cup in Munich last year.
She scripted history at 2019 ISSF World Cup by winning India’s first gold medal in the Women’s 10m Air Pistol on Thursday. During her performance, Bhaker broke the junior world record with her total of 244.7 and became only the second Indian shooter after Heena Sidhu to win a gold medal Women’s 10m Air Pistol category. As for her preference, Bhaker said she would want to target both the 10m and 25m category.