Anish Bhanwala has clinched a quota place for the Paris 2024 Olympics. The young marksman earned this coveted spot by winning a bronze medal in the men’s 25m rapid-fire pistol discipline at the 15th Asian Shooting Championship being held in Changwon, Korea. Anish’s performance marks the 12th quota place secured by the Indian shooting contingent.
Anish’s journey to the Paris Olympics quota was an impressive display of skill and composure. In the qualifying rounds, he shot a formidable 588, earning him a third-place qualification for the six-man final. He continued to shine in the final, where he shot 28 before bowing out in a closely contested shoot-off with silver medalist Dai Yoshioka of Japan. The gold in the men’s 25m rapid-fire pistol discipline went to Korean shooter Lee Gunhyeok, who scored 34 in the intense eight five-shot rapid-fire series decider.
India’s performance at the 15th Asian Shooting Championship has been nothing short of exceptional, with the team accumulating a total of 30 medals, including eight gold medals. Anish Bhanwala’s quota spot represents the fifth secured by the Indian contingent during this championship in Changwon, showcasing the depth and talent within the team.
Anish’s journey to securing the Paris 2024 Olympics quota was marked by consistently outstanding performances. He kicked off his campaign with a score of 294 in the first precision stage of qualifying, which positioned him among the leaders in a competitive field of 33 shooters. Undeterred, he returned the following morning to shoot another impressive 294 in the second rapid-fire round, bringing his total to 588. Anish’s remarkable consistency placed him just one point behind China’s Wang Xinjie, who topped the qualification standings.
The battle for the Paris quota intensified as three Chinese shooters made it to the 6-man final. Anish secured the third qualifying spot, following world champion Li Yuehong, thanks to a countback. This achievement guaranteed him one of the two available Paris quota places, as China had already exhausted their allotment, and competitors Lee and Dai had also secured their quotas in previous competitions.
Other Indian shooters also showcased their prowess at the championship. Vijayveer Sidhu narrowly missed out on the opportunity, finishing 10th overall and 8th among contenders with a score of 581. Adarsh Singh finished further back in 25th place, scoring 570, while Olympian Gurpreet Singh, who was competing for ranking points only (RPO), concluded his campaign in 15th place with a score of 577.
In the Men’s Trap team competition, the Indian trio of Zoravar Singh Sandhu, Kynan Chenai, and Prithviraj Tondaiman secured a silver medal, shooting a total of 341. They finished just three points behind the gold medalists from Qatar, with Iran claiming the bronze. Zoravar Singh Sandhu also reached the individual final, finishing in a respectable sixth place.
In the women’s trap event, the Indian shooters who were not in medal contention displayed noteworthy performances. Rajeshwari Kumari and Shagun Chowdhary, competing as RPO shooters, shot 108 and 107, securing the seventh and eighth positions, respectively. Preeti Rajak secured 10th place with a score of 103, while Manisha Keer (98) and Sabeera Haris (94) participated further down the order.
As the Asian Shooting Championship unfolds, India’s shooters continue to make their mark on the international stage, setting the stage for an exciting journey toward the Paris 2024 Olympics. Anish Bhanwala’s Paris quota is not only a personal triumph but also a testament to India’s growing dominance in the world of shooting sports.