Rudrankksh Patil, Divyansh Panwar, and Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar clinch India’s first gold of the Hangzhou Asian Games in Men’s 10m Air Rifle Team event

The three Indians shot an aggregate score of 1893.7, which was qualitatively much better than the 1890.1 registered by South Korea.


Rudrankksh Patil, Divyansh Panwar, and Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar clinch India’s first gold of the Hangzhou Asian Games in Men’s 10m Air Rifle Team event

India Men’s 10m Air Rifle Team (Via NRAI)

The Indian men’s air rifle team comprising Rudrankksh Patil, Divyansh Panwar and Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar were bang on target to seal the first gold medal for India in the Hangzhou Asian Games on Monday.

After the efforts from Ramita Jindal on Sunday, this was the thrust and boom that the Indians needed in shooting. This was top-class shooting from the trio, each one at his best on a day when all but Divyansh, made it to the individual finals as well.

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Divyansh Panwar has been around for a while, yet his coming of age was at the right time. He shot consistent cards right through the morning, with Rudrankksh also in same form. Aishwary has also been in smooth form this season and the trio made sure they would not take it easy.

The three Indians shot an aggregate score of 1893.7, which was qualitatively much better than the 1890.1 registered by South Korea. A three-point difference in aggregate is substantial.

Conditions in Hangzhou have been good for shooting, most importantly the right tonic was provided a day earlier by the women shooters. The 10-metre air rifle hall lighting has sufficient lux intensity and there can be no complaints from the shooters.

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Related: India begin with a bang by winning silver medal in the women’s air rifle team event at the Hangzhou Asian Games

Indian shooters are hitting the bullseye at Hangzhou Asian Games

“Congratulations to the air rifle team on the fantastic effort. It is a world class performance,” Abhinav Bindra told FirstSportz after hearing the news. Bindra, India’s first Olympic individual gold medalist, has been following the exploits of the Indians. Before the Asian Games, he had said in an interview, the Indian marksmen could be doing well this time. It has come true.

What stood out on Monday with the three Indians all geared up in their shooting suits, which is almost skin-tight and heavy, was how they were focused. Usually, even if one shooter has an off-day, the team scores can dip. That was not to be as Divyansh, Rudrankksh and Aishwary were mentally in a Zen state.

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Ramita, Mehuli Ghosh and Ashi Chouksey
From L-R: Ramita, Mehuli Ghosh and Ashi Chouksey opened the shooting account at the Hangzhou 2022 games yesterday (Via Business Standard)

Pressure can kill the shooters in the big stage when you have Chinese and Korean shooters breathing down your neck. It is a tribute to their mental strength that the Indians were a picture of composure. To beat China for any medal, individual or team, in China, is a big deal.

Back to the quality of the morning’s session, it was the Indians who showed what rhythm is all about in a sport where there is no room for a margin of error. Even one bad shot can weigh you down. In ages, this has been a solid performance. Perhaps pushing each other, literally, helps while competing. That used to be the case in the good old days when Abhinav Bindra and Gagan Narang used to be competing.

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