Commonwealth Games champions Manu Bhaker and Anish Bhanwala swept the senior and junior gold medals in the women’s 10m air pistol and men’s 25m rapid fire pistol events at the National Shooting Championships on Tuesday.
The 17-year-old Bhaker, representing Haryana, clinched four gold medals (individual and team events in senior and junior) on Tuesday to add to her two won earlier in the competition and also equalled the qualification national record en-route a facile victory.
Her state-mate Anish, also 17, won both the individual and team gold medals in the senior and junior men’s categories of his event to stamp his dominance.
Bhaker, who has also won India one of its 15 Tokyo Olympics quota berths, shot 588 to top qualifications and equal the record set by Annu Raj Singh in the South Asian Games. She then shot a 243 to emerge triumphant in the eight-woman final.
Devanshi Dhama was way back with 237.8 and another Tokyo quota winner Yashaswini Singh Deswal won bronze with 217.7.
Bhanwala shot 28 in the rapid fire final to leave behind Bhavesh Shekhawat of Rajasthan who ended with 26 while Chandigarh’s Vijayveer Sidhu came third with 22 hits.
Bhanwala had also topped the qualifying with a score of 582.
Earlier, Manu spoke about the pressure and mental preparation required to handle the pressure in the highly-awaited Tokyo Olympics 2020. In an interview with PTI, Manu said she would love to shoot in both the 10m and 25m pistol events at the Games, provided she makes the final squad.
Last month, the Jhajjar-born shooter fired her way to the gold medal with a junior world record in the women’s 10m air pistol event of the World Cup Finals in Putian, ending the year’s international commitments on a rousing note.
Now she is all geared up for the biggest sporting event of all.
“It all depends on the selection of the team. I can’t say anything on that right now. But if you are asking me about my preference, of course, I would look to shoot in both 10m and 25m, as I give equal importance to both events and my scores in 25m is not bad at all,” Manu said.
The ace shooter added:“I may not have won in 25m but my scores are good there also.”