first_img(REOPENS DEL 8) (REOPENS DEL 8) Jitu Rai, who emerged as the brightest medal prospect in that period by regularly winning on the world stage, would prove to be the biggest disappointment as he failed to finish on the podium in both his pistol events at Rio. The likes of Heena, Manavjeet Singh Sandhu, Narang, Apurvi Chandela and Jitu, among others, left the country thoroughly disappointed after they were unable to put on an impressive show. The committee concluded that the consistent trickle of shooting medals since the 2004 Athens Games ended up making everyone involved in the sport complacent. “Everyone took it for granted that there would be progress automatically, and forgot to ensure a systematic healthy process,” the report had stated. “The committee was unanimous in its view that Indian shooting needs to change, change its attitude, its policies and practices, so that the booming talent gets a fair chance to flourish in a healthy atmosphere, and win all the medals that it can in the World Championships and the Olympics.” It is an irony that the shooters let India down despite being provided all help while preparing for the mega sporting event. Jitu revived his season by winning the Champion of Champions pistol award in the World Cup Final towards the end. Meanwhile, Indias rich haul of 15 medals in the Asian Shooting Championship for rifle and pistol in Tehran saw a lot of positives. It saw some new stars emerge with Shahzar Rizvi and Ruchita Vinerkar being the most notable faces. There were a few others such as Shubhankar Pramanik, Anmol Jain, Swapnil Kusale, Manavaditya Rathore, son of the Indias first Olympic medallist in shooting, and Anant Jeet Singh Naruka who did very well, continuing the work in progress. In the junior category, there was lot to cheer about as India finished second overall with a total of nine gold, five silver and 10 bronze medals at the years second and final Junior World Cup in September in Azerbaijan. They finished second in the tournament, an improvement of two places after being placed fourth in the years first World Cup. Meanwhile, the ISSF (International Shooting Sport federation) has rung in some changes to international events that will rob a number of existing male shooters of their favoured events. Bindra is heading the panel that has recommended the changes. Prepared to face brickbats, Bindra tried to reason with those who criticised the idea. The ISSF announced that the double trap event will be replaced by trap mixed gender team event, while 10m air rifle mixed gender team event will replace the 50m rifle prone event. The 50m pistol men event will be taken over by 10m air pistol mixed gender team event. All this is being done in an effort to correct the gender imbalance in medal events at the Olympics. PTI AH PM PMadvertisementlast_img read more

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