Harpreet snatches silver, Manavjit shoots to bronze

Glasgow :  Indian shooters continued to dominate the Barry Buddon Centre with the unassuming Sanjeev Rajput and Harpreet Singh clinching a silver medal each but there was heartbreak for Olympic silver winner Vijay Kumar in the 20th Commonwealth Games here on Tuesday.

Star marksman Gagan Narang had to be contend with a bronze while Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Lajja Gauswami, too, finished third on the podium, as India finished with an impressive tally of 17 medals (4 9 4) from the Games.

Narang, the biggest name in the fray, failed to defend his gold in the men’s 50m rifle 3 position on the concluding day of the shooting events. The 31-year-old Narang, who had won a bronze in the 2012 London Olympics in 10m air rifle event, shot 423.3 while Rajput aggregated 436.8 in the final held under windy conditions at the Barry Buddon Shooting Center at Dundee near here.

Rajput and Narang were trailing at third and fifth after the three rounds of kneeling competition, each round having five shots. They were fourth and sixth respectively after the completion of three rounds of prone competition.

But both made a remarkable recovery in the standing position to bag the silver and bronze respectively. Harpreet survived two rounds of nerve-wrecking shoot-off and brushed aside a penalty point docked on him to claim silver in the men’s 25m rapid fire pistol event.

The 33-year-old Harpreet from Haryana saved India from disaster by bagging the silver after Olympic silver medallist Vijay failed to qualify for the final round after finishing seventh in the qualification. Only the top six in the qualification round qualify for the final. Harpreet, who topped the qualification round, hit 21 times on the target in the six-shooter final which had eight rounds of five shots each. Manavjit bagged a bronze medal in the men’s trap event.

If not for faulty light system, would have won gold

Singh  Shooter Harpreet Singh today blasted the ‘faulty lighting system’ at the Barry Buddon Centre, saying it cost him the gold medal since the penalty he copped due to a delayed shot was a result of that defect. Harpreet had to be content with a silver in the 25m rapid fire pistol event.

“There was problem in the lighting system. Because of the faulty lighting, the first shot was delayed and because of that my fifth shot was out of time and I had to be docked a penalty point. That made the difference. Had it not been that, I would have been in a better position to win the gold,” a visibly disappointed Harpreet said after the event.

“I made a complaint but the judges said it was ok. So I cannot do anything. There was pressure on me after that.”  A shooter gets four seconds after the red light on the target turns green, signalling to shoot. The six-shooter final had eight rounds of five shots each. Disaster struck Harpreet in the sixth round. He was leading by two hits then but could get two hits and was docked a penalty of one hit on account of ‘out of time’ ruled by the judge.

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