Olympic selection: Sift, Aishwary lead as top two

Bhopal, May 18: Sift Kaur Samra and Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar led the standings as the top two shooters in the women’s and men’s 50M Rifle 3 Positions (3P) events of the ongoing Olympic Selection Trials (OST) 3&4 Rifle/Pistol, respectively.

Their positions were identified after the conclusion of their respective OST T4 qualification rounds at the M.P. State Shooting Academy ranges, on Friday.

India’s number one world record holder, Sift Kaur Samra, returned a splendid 593, while Olympian Anjum Moudgil finished second with a solid 588.

Both ensured they would finish 1-2 in the five-woman field irrespective of the result of the finals on Saturday morning.

Nishchal (587), Shriyanka Sadangi (580), and Ashi Chouksey (577) finished third, fourth, and fifth, respectively.
In the men’s 3P, local favourite Aishwary shot a third successive score of 590 or above, to not only top the OST T4 qualifications but also take an unassailable lead at the top of the standings.

Swapnil Kusale, one of the first to win a Paris quota in 2022, was also assured of a second-place finish in the standings based on his first three OST scores, despite finishing fifth on Friday with a 573.

Four finals – The day also saw four finals, with Manu Bhaker winning the women’s 10M Air Pistol OST T3, edging out Esha Singh by 0.8 with a score of 241.0.

The range, however, was set on fire by Naveen in the men’s 10M Air Pistol OST T3 final, when he shot a score of 246.8, 0.3 above the existing world record score, and sailed to victory. Such was his dominance that Sarabjot Singh, who placed second, was left a huge 4.4 points behind.