Gun Malfunction Derails Manu's Effort as She & Deswal Fail to Qualify For Final
Manu Bhaker finished 12th and had a technical glitch which slowed her down in 10m Air Pistol qualifiers at Tokyo.
It wasn’t a good start to the Sunday for the Indian shooting contingent as the women in the 10m Air Pistol event failed to progress to the final at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Manu Bhaker and Yashaswini Deswal were in action and while the former finished 2 points short of qualification at 12th, Deswal finished a position below her, falling three points short.
Yashwini is the current world number one in the event while Manu is ranked two.
Manu, considered one of India’s best medal hopes, had a technical glitch which slowed her down. After a few hiccups in the third and fourth series, she rattled off an excellent fifth series shooting 98/100. An opening of 98 was followed by 95, 94 and a 95 as the young shooter dropped out of the top-10.
The problem with her gun broke her rhythm as it saw her lose five minutes but she came back to manage a 95 in the second series.
In the final series, under pressure, Manu needed consecutive 10s to qualify for the medal round, but three 9s and an 8 meant she fell short of the qualification mark. Manu scored 575/600 with the eighth placed shooter scoring 577.
Elaborating on the incident, Pistol coach Ronak Pandit said, “The cocking lever of the weapon broke after 16 shots. We had to get it changed. She had 44 shots remaining in 56mins and then when we started it was 44 shots in 38mins. To change the lever, the grip and the trigger circuit has to be removed. They were put back but then the circuit would not work so we had to change that again. She was placed fourth when all this happened and by the time she resumed, others were in their fourth series while she was still on her second. No extra time is allowed according to the rules and the pressure at the end was too much. We are proud of the way she shot today.”
Ranxin Jian of China topped the qualification round with a score of 587.
Yashaswini on the other hand failed to get going throughout the round, switching between 9s and 10s on most occasions. She didn’t pose a significant challenge to the top guns and finished in 13th place with an aggregate score of 574.
While this is the end of Yashwini's campaign, Manu will be competing in the 25m individual event as well as the mixed team event along with fellow 19-year-old Saurabh Chaudhary on 27 July.
(with various inputs)
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