The Indian men’s 10m air pistol team overcame a slow start and shot a brilliant second half to qualify for yet another shooting gold at the ongoing Asian Games in Hangzhou on Thursday.
The trio of Sarabjot Singh, Arjun Singh Cheema and Shiva Narwal took the team gold with 1733. They beat China by just one point, with Singh and Narwal finishing top with a perfect shot (10). Vietnam rounded off the podium with a 1730.
Singh and Cheema also made it to the individual finals to finish in the top eight after a remarkable recovery. Singh is fifth with a total of 530 and Cheema is eighth with 578. Narwhal, however, is 14th with 576. The final is at 9am today – and you can follow the action live here.
All three of them had indifferent starts and generally needed a big push in the second half of qualifying to make the cut in low-scoring qualifying.
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Team medals in shooting have been getting mixed reviews at the Asian Games, as they are decided based on the cumulative scores of a country’s shooters in individual qualifications. However, the men’s 10m air pistol team showed that despite winning individually, it showcased the team’s depth and consistency.
The shooting qualification was not shown live but the live scorecard showed what a comeback India would have to make. At the halfway mark, India were sixth and seventh after a slow start with 92 from Singh and Narwal.
But as the qualifiers came to an end, the Indians surged ahead and were soon in the silver medal position in the team and the individual finals. For example, Singh started with two 95 series but followed it up with a solid 97, 98, 97 and 98.
China overtook Uzbekistan and topped the charts before the last two Indians took their shot, both at gold and needing a perfect 10 seconds to get there.
Men’s 10m air pistol was the event that India lit up at the last Asian Games, with the then Indian debutant, a certain 16-year-old Sourav Chaudhary and Abhishek Verma making it a historic double podium for India.