Young Paralympic champion Avani Lekhara continued her rich form as she clinched her second gold medal at the ongoing Chateauroux 2022 World Shooting Para Sport World Cup on Saturday.
Lekhara shot 458.3 in the R8 – Women’s 50m Rifle 3 Positions SH1 finals to take the gold ahead of experienced Paralympic stars Veronica Vadovicova (456.6) of Slovakia and Sweden’s Anna Normann (441.9). Vadovicova and Normann took the silver and bronze respectively.
The promising shooter from Rajasthan made a slow start to the finals but quickly got back her rhythm to produce consistent shots, including over 10 scores in the last three rounds, to emerge the winner.
The 20-year-old Lekhara has already won the R2 – Women’s 10m Air Rifle Standing SH1 gold with a world record effort on Day 1, and ensured India a quota for Paris 2024 Paralympics Games.
“Very emotional as I brought home the 2nd Gold Medal of this #WorldCup in the 50M 3P event with a score of 458.3. Couldn’t be happier!” tweeted Lekhara who claimed the bronze medal at the Paralympics in the same event. She also clinched the Paralympic gold in R2- Women’s 10m Air Rifle SH1 event, at Tokyo 2020.
Francis claims bronze
Another youngster to shine on the day was Rubina Francis, who claimed her second individual medal in consecutive days. Francis settled for the bronze shooting 213.1 in the P2 – Women’s 10m Air Pistol SH1 finals, as Turkey’s Aysel Ozgan clinched the gold with a world record effort of 240.0.
Ozgan’s fellow shooter from Turkey, Aysegul Pehlivanlar (236.7) claimed the silver medal.
The team of Francis, Sumedha Pathak and Nisha Kanwar later went on to claim the silver in P2 – Women’s 10m Air Pistol SH1 Team event with a total 1648-29x finishing behind China (1659-30x). Thailand (1589-15x) took the bronze.
In the P1 – Men’s 10m Air Pistol SH1 team event, Paralympic stars Manish Narwal, Singhraj and Nihal Singh won the silver aggregating a score of 1692-52x.
China (1702-45x) took the gold while Turkey (1687-43x) the bronze.
However, Narwal and Singhraj missed out on medals in the individual finals finishing in the fourth and fifth places. The final was won by multiple-time Paralympic champion Yang Chao (239.6) of China.