New Delhi, Jan 30 (IANS) Star shooters Jitu Rai, Gagan Narang and Apurvi Chandela will spearhead the 27-member strong Indian squad in the upcoming Commonwealth Games to be held in April at Gold Coast, Australia.
The National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) on Tuesday announced the full quota of 27 shooters (15 men and 12 women) after the Organising Committee of the Games reduced the country quotas across sports.
While most of the disciplines will be held at Gold Coast, shooting will be held at the Belmont Shooting Centre in Brisbane from April 8 to 14.
There will be nine men’s and eight women’s events in the three disciplines of rifle, pistol and shotgun.
Besides Rai and Narang, other top shooters among men include Sanjeev Rajput, Manvjit Singh Sandhu and Mohammed Asab.
Among women, experienced Heena Sidhu, promising youngsters Mehuli Ghosh and Manu Bhakar have also been named along with Chandela.
“We have gone strictly by performance and merit as usual. For the Commonwealth Games, given the reduced quotas it was tough to have to leave out a few shooters who had shot consistently well over the considered period and we went for consistent top ranks across multiple events,” NRAI President Raninder Singh said in a statement.
“We believe we have a quality squad to match up and even better our performances of yesteryears. There are some exciting and extremely talented youngsters who will rub shoulders with established seniors and I am sure they will come out better with the experience. We wish them all the very best,” he added.
The NRAI also named squads for the six International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup stages of this year.
The junior shooters who have made it to the Commonwealth Games squad have not been selected for the Junior World Cups in view of the importance attached to the CWG.
Men’s Squad (15)
50m Rifle 3 Position: Sanjeev Rajput, Chain Singh
50m Rifle Prone: Chain Singh, Gagan Narang
10m Air Rifle: Ravi Kumar, Deepak Kumar
25m Rapid Fire Pistol: Anish, Neeraj Kumar
50m Free Pistol: Jitu Rai, Om Prakash Mitharwal
10m Air Pistol: Jitu Rai, Om Prakash Mitharwal
Trap: Manavjit Singh Sandhu, Kynan Chenai
Double Trap: Mohd Asab, Ankur Mittal