Rajeshwari Kumari secured the seventh Paris 2024 Olympics quota in shooting for India at the ISSF World Championship 2023 after finishing fifth in the women’s trap final in Baku, Azerbaijan, on Thursday.
The ISSF World Championship 2023 is a qualifying event for the Paris 2024 Olympics. A total of 48 Olympic quotas were on offer with the top four finishers (one per country) in each of the 12 Olympic individual shooting events securing a spot for their national teams.
Since London 2012 Olympic champion Jessica Rossi, the eventual silver medallist in Baku, had already obtained an Olympic quota for Italy earlier, Rajeshwari Kumari obtained the quota for India by finishing fifth in the medal round. It was also 31-year-old Rajeshwari Kumari’s best result at the shooting world championships.
Rajeshwari Kumari hit 19 of her 30 shots on target in the final. Jessica Rossi claimed the silver with 39/50 and was pipped to the top podium by Lin Yi Chun of the Chinese Taipei, who scored 40/50. Kathrin Murche of Germany won bronze with 28/40.
In the qualifying round, Rajeshwari Kumari came third in a field of 75 after scoring 120 from her five sets. India’s Manisha Keer came 23rd with a score of 115 while Preeti Rajah was 58th with 109. The Indian trio finished fifth in the team standings with a cumulative score of 344.
Rajeshwari Kumari obtained India’s seventh Paris 2024 quota in shooting but it was the first in the women’s trap event. A country can only obtain a maximum of two quotas in each individual event.
National Olympic Committees (NOCs) have the exclusive authority for the representation of their respective countries at the Olympic Games and athletes’ participation at the Paris Games depends on their NOC selecting them to represent their delegation at Paris 2024.
India’s Sift Kaur Samra (women’s 50m rifle 3 positions), Akhil Sheoran (men’s 50m rifle 3 positions) and Mehuli Ghosh (women’s 10m air rifle) had obtained Olympic quotas for India at the Baku meet earlier.
Bhowneesh Mendiratta (men’s trap), Rudrankksh Balasaheb Patil (men’s 10m air rifle) and Swapnil Kusale (men’s 50m rifle 3 positions) also secured Olympic quotas for India at last year’s ISSF World Championships.
Earlier in the day, the Indian men’s 25m centre fire pistol team of Rajendra Bagul, Akshay Jain and Gaurav Chaudhary secured a bronze medal with a cumulative score of 1718.
In the individual section, Rajendra Bagul was the best-placed Indian at 12th in the field of 38 with a score of 575. Akshay Jain shot 573 to come 17th and Gaurav Chaudhary was 21st with 570.
So far, India have won 10 medals – five gold and five bronze – at the ISSF World Championships 2023 in Baku. While the qualifying events for the Paris 2024 Olympics in Baku concluded on Thursday, competitions in non-Olympic shooting events will continue till August 31.
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