New Delhi: Indian shooters provided the country with the first gold medal as they bagged two gold and a silver medal to kick off their campaign in the Commonwealth Games at the Dr Karni Singh Range here in a grand fashion.
After Abhinav Bindra and Gagan Narang fired in unison to give the country its first gold in the competition with a record 1193 in men’s 10m air rifle event, Rahi Sarnobat and Anisa Sayeed consolidated the hosts’ medals tally by winning the yellow metal in pairs 25m pistol event for women.
Deepak Sharma and Omkar Singh (1187) clinched the silver medal in 50m pistol for men, finishing just seven points behind Singapore’s Bin Gai and Swee Hon Lim. Trinidad & Tobago’s Roger Peter Daniel and Rhodney Richard Allen bagged the bronze medal in the event.
While the duo of Abhinav and Gagan scored 1193 to break their own record, which they had set four years ago in Melbourne when they totalled 1189, Sarnobat and Sayeed broke an eight-year-old record after the pair shot an impressive 1158 to finish ahead of Australia’s Lalita Yauhleuskaya and Linda Ryan (1148) and England’s Gorgs Geikie and Julia Lydall (1122).
The previous record stood in the name of Australia’s Lalita Yauhleuskaya and Linda Ryan, who totalled 1150 during the Manchester Commonwealth Games in 2002.
England’s James Huckle and Kenny Parr (1174) won the silver medal while Bangladesh’s Abdullah Hel Baki and Md. Asif Hussain Khan (1173) had to be content with bronze in 10m air rifle. Both countries, however, were far behind the Indian duo of Bindra and Gagan.
Events at the karni Singh range today folded on expected lines with Bindra and Gagan dominating the filed in air rifle.
World record holder Gagan, coming off a none too impressive season, shot a spectacular sequence of 99, 100, 100, 99, 100, 100 to total a grand 598, while Beijing Olympic gold medalist, Bindra’s series read 100, 98 ,99, 100, 99, 99 for a total of 595 in the first shooting event of the Games.
“Many thought I am dictator, since I had imposed a gag order on the shooters prior to the Games. But whatever I was doing, I was doing for the country. And we have got ther reward for that,” said national coach Sunny Thomas.