CHENNAI: The National Rifle Association of India (NRAI), the governing body of shooting in the country, has named a 24-member team, including Tokyo-bound Manu Bhaker and nine other Olympic quota winners for the upcoming Asian Online Shooting Championship from January 28-30.
As the name suggests, the competition, which is organised by the Kuwait Shooting Federation, will be held online and the Indians will compete at the Dr Karni Shooting Range in Delhi. The event is approved by the Asian Shooting Confederation (ASC) and is expected to draw some of the elite shooters from Asia. The selected Indian shooters have been asked to confirm their participation before 5 pm on Thursday.
Apurvi Chandela, Anjum Moudgil and Elavenil Valarivan will be aiming high in the women’s air rifle section. This will incidentally be the first competitive meet for most of the Indians since the coronavirus pandemic brought the sport to a standstill in 2020. But a few pistol and rifle shooters including World No 1 Elavenil have had some form of experience taking part in an online event.
The same can’t be said about shotgun shooters from the country. Given that the discipline is held outdoors, it will be interesting to see how it will unfold during the meet. Veteran skeet shooter Mairaj Ahmad Khan is unsure of what to expect but he’s, nevertheless, looking forward to the challenge. The ever-mindful shooter knows this event could prove to be vital in the long run. “I’m excited to shoot. It’s been a long time since I took part in a good competition. It will be a new experience. Let’s see how it goes,” Mairaj, the first-ever skeet shooter from the country to make the Olympics cut, told this daily.
Air rifle: Men: Divyansh Singh Panwar, Deepak Kumar, Arjun Babuta. Women: Apurvi Chandela, Anjum Moudgil, Elavenil Valarivan.
Air pistol: Men: Saurabh Chaudhary, Abhishek Verma, Sarabjot Singh. Women: Manu Bhaker, Yashaswini Singh Deswal, Annuraj Singh.
Trap: Men: Lakshay Sheoran, Kynan Chenai, Prithviraj Tondaiman. Women: Rajeshwari Kumar, Shreyasi Singh, Manisha Keer. SkeeT: Men: Angadvir Singh Bajwa, Mairaj Ahmad Khan, Gurjoat Singh Khangura. Women: Ganemat Sekhon, Parinaaz Dhaliwal, Karttiki Singh Shaktawat.