Ministry directs NRAI to initiate fresh election process
New Delhi, Sep 17 (Sports news) Just a day before the National Rifle Association of India's (NRAI) elections in Mohali, the Sports Ministry has directed the shooting body to initiate the process afresh after presidential candidate Shyam Singh Yadav cited "perceptible conflict of interest" in the appointment of the Returning Officer for the polls.
The NRAI will, however, go ahead with the elections on Saturday as the matter is pending before the Delhi High Court with the next date of hearing in December. Incumbent president Raninder Singh is seeking re-election and is being challenged by Yadav.
In view of the ministry order, the elections are set to be declared null and void.
Acting on a petition filed by Uttar Pradesh State Rifle Association president Yadav, the ministry ordered that the returning officer should be changed to ensure that the national sports code, 2011, is not violated.
Yadav is a BSP Lok Sabha MP from UP's Jaunpur constituency while Singh, serving his third term in the top job, is the son of Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh.
The returning officer for the polls is Justice (retd) Mehtab Singh Gill, whose appointment, the petitioner alleged, was not done in a fair manner.
"… It has also been contended by the petitioner that the returning officer was appointed as the Chief Vigilance Officer (CVC) of the state of Punjab under Punjab state Vigilance Commission act; "....and that name for the said post has been recommended by a three-member committee headed by a close relative of the current president of NRAI," the ministry said in the letter which is in possession of PTI.
"A perceptible conflict of interest arising out of imputed personal and professional relations among the RO and the concerned stakeholders has been drawn by the petitioner...
"Therefore, NRAI is directed to appoint a new Returning Officer and initiate fresh election process for conducting elections to its Governing Body in a fair, objective and transparent manner by adhering to the provisions of National Sports Development Code of India, 2011," the letter added.
The ministry also looked into the objections raised by Yadav regarding Singh's tenure but found the incumbent to have a legitimate claim at re-election.
As per the sports code, "the president of any recognised NSF, including the IOA, can hold the office for a maximum period of 12 years, with or without break.” Going by the technicalities, Singh remains a valid candidate as he will complete 12 years in the post at the end of 2022.
Also read: Tokyo Debacle: NRAI executives to be assessed, three-part review underway
"The petitioner has raised the issue of the current president of NRAI seeking his re-election as president for the fourth term and whereas this ministry letter No. 52-66/2009 SP-I (Vol.II) dated 30.10.2017 provides that he is serving his third term as President of NRAI for 2017-2021," the ministry noted.
Singh had previously defeated Yadav for the president's post in the NRAI's 2010 and 2017 elections.
News source: PTI
Avani, Siddhartha and Deepak fail to qualify for mixed 50m rifle prone finals at the Tokyo Paralympics
Tokyo, Sep 5 (Paralympics news): No Indian shooter could make the finals of the mixed 50m rifle prone SH1 event of the Paralympics with newly-discovered star Avani Lekhara ending 28th in the qualification here on Sunday, bringing the curtains down on a historic campaign that yielded an unprecedented five medals in the sport.
Siddhartha Babu came closest to making the cut but he missed the mark by a whisker, ending ninth in the qualification round. Babu shot a score of 617.2, which was just 0.2 behind China's Chao Dong (617.4).
Lekhara, who won a 10m air rifle gold and a 50m rifle 3 positions bronze, came up with a score of 612 to end way down at 28th. It was nonetheless a stupendous Games performance from the 19-year-old debutant, who became the first Indian woman to claim a shooting medal and a Games gold medal.
The third Indian in fray, Deepak, ended third from bottom at 46th after shooting a score of 602.2.
Athletes in SH1 Rifle have an impairment in their legs, for example amputations or paraplegia.
The mixed event features shooters of both genders.
India's shooting campaign thus came to an end with an unprecedented haul of five medals, including two gold.
Apart from Lekhara, 19-year-old Manish Narwal too struck gold, in the men's 50m pistol SH1 event.
Singhraj Adana also claimed two medals in the competition, a silver in 50m pistol SH1 and a bronze in 10m air pistol SH1 events.
Also read: Krishna Nagar secures India's second gold in Badmintion at the Tokyo Paralympics
News source: PTI
Manish Narwal and Singhraj win Gold and Silver medal at the Mixed 50m Pistol SH1 final at the Tokyo Paralympics
(Shooting News) Indian shooters Manish Narwal and Singhraj made the country proud by winning gold and silver medal at the Mixed 50m Pistol SH1 final. Singhraj started off strongly, scoring 19.4 after two shots and being in first position from the get go. Narwhal’s second shot meant that the 19 year old was at 17.8 but by the time five shots were fired, both the Indians were cemented in the top 3 positions with scores of 46.1 and 45.4.
However, the circumstances changed for the worse as before long the Indians were forced to give up their lead when Manish Narwal dropped down to 6th while Singhraj languished in third from medal winning positions. Narwal improved on his score with 104.3 by shot 12 to move up two positions and with the eliminations looming large, both Narwal and Singhraj were desperate to make their way into the top 3.
Their fortunes changed by shot 16 when both the Indians were in the top 3 positions with Singhraj in second place and by shot 20, both the Chinese shooters shot 7.5 to ensure Manish Narwal and Singhraj with gold and silver medals respectively.
Also read: Soman Rana misses podium finish in Shot Put at the Tokyo Paralympics, Lakra and Ekta produce season bests in Club Throw
Avani Lekhara wins her second medal in Shooting at the Tokyo Paralympics
(Shooting News) Tokyo Paralympics 2021 Live Update: Avani Lekhara scripted history by winning the Bronze medal in the Women's 50m Rifle 3P SH1 at the Tokyo Paralympics. She shot a 445.9 in the final to be placed third in the event. She had earlier won the Gold medal in Women's R2 - 10m air rifle SH1 and is the second Indian athlete after Joginder Singh Bedi in the 1984 Stoke Mandeville/New York to win multiple medals in a single edition of the Paralympic Games.
Avani is the only Indian woman to win a Gold medal and also win multiple medals in a single edition of the Paralympic Games, this is India’s 12th medal at the Tokyo Paralympics and there are more events to come.
Also read: Harvinder Singh and Vivek Chikara keep Indian medal hopes alive in Archery at the Tokyo Paralympics
Shooter Rahul Jakhar ends 5th in mixed 25m pistol at Paralympics
Tokyo, Sep 2 (Paralympics news)Live Updates: Indian shooter Rahul Jakhar signed off 5th in the P3 mixed 25m pistol SH1 event of the Paralympics here on Thursday.
The 35-year-old Jakhar was eliminated at the end of the seventh series in the finals after qualifying second with a score of 576, which included 284 in precision and 292 in the rapid stage.
It is by far his best international performance.
Athletes in SH1 pistol competitions have an impairment affecting one arm and/or the legs, resulting from amputations or spinal cord injuries.
The other Indian in fray, Akash, could not qualify for the finals after ending 20th in the qualifications with a score of 551 (278 in precision and 273 in rapid).
The mixed event features both male and female shooters with the top eight qualifying for the finals.
Also read: Taekwondo player Aruna withdraws from Paralympics repechage due to suspected fracture
China's Xing Huang claimed the gold medal with a Paralympic record score of 27 in the finals. He also holds the world record score of 36 that he shot in 2018 in this event.
Poland's Szymon Sowinski claimed the silver with a 21, while Ukraine's Oleksii Denysiuk notched up the bronze after finishing at 20 in the finals.
India have so far claimed two medals in shooting.
The first was an unprecedented gold by Avani Lekhara in the women's 10m air rifle SH1 competition.
Singhraj Adana later picked up a bronze in the men's 10m air pistol SH1 event.
News source: PTI
Shooters Avani Lekhara, Sidhartha Babu and Deepak Saini fail to qualify in the Mixed 10m Air Rifle event
(Shooting news) Tokyo Paralympics 2021 Live Update: On day 8 of the Tokyo Paralympics, Indian shooters Avani Lekhara, Sidhartha Babu and Deepak Saini failed to qualify in the Mixed 10m Air Rifle event where eight out of 47 participants make their way into the final. Despite trying their best, Avani finished 27th, Siddhartha Babu 40th and Deepak Saini 43rd.
19 year old Avani Lekhara had earlier won a gold medal in the women’s 10m air rifle standing event in the SH 1 category and has been named as brand ambassador for the ‘Beti Bachao and Beti Padhao’ project.
Also read: Singhraj takes the Bronze in Men's 10m Air Pistol SH1 at the Tokyo Paralympics
Singhraj takes the Bronze in Men's 10m Air Pistol SH1 at the Tokyo Paralympics
(Shooting news) Tokyo Paralympics 2021 Live Update: Singhraj fired away for a bronze medal in the Men's 10m Air Pistol SH1 at the Tokyo Paralympics . He got off to a brilliant start scoring 50.3 in the 1st round and continuing his good form by scoring 216.8 by the end of the 2nd round elimination. Singhraj has secured the first medal of the day and eighth overall as India continues to shine in this year’s Paralympics. Manish Nirwal who had finished first in the qualification could not do the same as he finished 7th with a score of 135.8
Also read: India women's TT team loses to China in quarters
India's Rubina Francis finishes seventh in women's 10m air pistol SH1 final
Tokyo, Aug 31 (Paralympic news) Fancied Indian shooter Rubina Francis finished seventh in the women's 10m air pistol SH1 final of the Tokyo Paralympic Games here on Tuesday.
Rubina had 128.1 points when she was eliminated in the seventh place at the Akasa Shooting Range.
As the pistol is held with one hand only, athletes in SH1 pistol have an impairment affecting one arm and/or the legs, for example resulting from amputations or spinal cord injuries.
Some shooters compete in a seated position, while others take aim in a standing position as defined in the rules.
Iran's Sareh Javanmardi won the gold medal with a world record score of 239.2. Rubina held the previous world record with 238.1.
It was always going to be an uphill task for Rubina after she shot a horror 6.6 in the first series. Still she was placed fourth after the end of the 1st competition stage with 93.1 point, as the elimination rounds began.
She tried but could not regain the lost ground and was the second shooter to be eliminated in the eight-women final.
Also read: Vinod Kumar clinches bronze in discus throw, third medal for India in Paralympics
Earlier, she started off well in the qualifications to finish seventh with 560 points and make the final.
At the end of the first series, Rubina was in 13th place with 91 points but the Indian shooter moved into sixth place after a total of 187 at the end of the second series.
Rubina then moved to the third place with 282 points at the halfway stage of the qualifications.
In the next two series, Rubina recorded scores of 93 and 93 respectively and slipped to the seventh spot.
The 22-year-old from Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh had set the world record in the finals at the World Cup in Lima, Peru in June.
She was born with an impairment to her leg.
In May, she had contracted COVID-19 while at the national training camp. She was unable to train for more than a month, until days before the World Cup event in Lima, Peru, where she won gold in the women's SH1 10m air pistol and secured a quota place for Tokyo.
Javanmardi also topped the qualifying round with a score of 572, a new Paralympic Games record for qualifying.
News source: PTI
Swaroop Mahavir Unhalkar finishes fourth after a valiant fight in Shooting at the Tokyo Paralympics
(Shooting news) Tokyo Paralympics 2021 Live Update: Swaroop Mahavir Unhalkar finished fourth in R1 - Men's 10m AR Standing SH1 at the Tokyo Paralympics. He scored 204.9 as he slipped down during the elimination stage. In the 1st stage he scored 102.9 and was looking for a Silver medal but in the final stages he got eliminated as the top three went through for the final shots.
He had earlier finished 7th in the qualifications with a score of 615.2 to qualify for the finals as only the top 8 enter the final stage.
Also read: Devendra Jhajharia and Sundar Singh Gurjar put up a show in Men’s Javelin Throw, 7 medals so far for India
Shooter Avani Lekhara wins India’s first gold medal at the Tokyo Paralympics
(Shooting news) Tokyo Paralympics 2021 Live Update: Avani Lekhara became the first shooter from India to win a Paralympic medal, and it was a GOLD! The 19 year old showed calmness and maturity beyond her years to finish on top of the Women’s 10m Air Rifle SH1 with a score of 249.6.
Avani finished 7th in the qualification round, scoring 621.7 and competing with the top 5 ranked shooters in the women’s in the SH1 category. Despite being in her late teens, the shooter performed admirably and registered scores of 124.9, 145.7 and 166.9 consecutively. Her pinpoint accuracy meant shots of 10.7 and 10.6 were frequent. Her score of 249.6 meant the Indian shooter set a new Paralympic record and equalled the World Record.
Also read: Bhavina Patel wins silver at the Tokyo Paralympics after losing 3-0 to Zhou Ying from China in the women’s singles
Shooting world cups may not carry Olympic qualification status in future
New Delhi, Aug 14 (Sports news) The world cups of shooting may not carry Olympic qualification status in the near future as the sport's global governing body contemplates restricting the quota places to only the world championships and continental tournaments.
The International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) has been planning to introduce changes to its Olympic qualification criteria for a while now and the system used for the recently-concluded Tokyo Games is unlikely to be there for the 2024 Paris edition.
This was confirmed to PTI by an insider in the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI), which has in its possession the ISSF documents related to the proposed changes in the qualification criteria for the multi-sporting showpiece.
"The ISSF has sent its material to the federations regarding the changes. So, once the proposal is approved, the world cups will not carry quota places, which will be there in only the world championships and the continental tournaments," he said on the condition of anonymity.
In the wake of the Indian shooters' disappointing outing at the Tokyo Olympics despite entering the Games with a few medal contenders, a school of thought has emerged that they took part in too many ISSF world cups, thereby exposing themselves to the participants from other nations ahead of their biggest challenge.
"It was felt by many that the Indian shooters competed in too many world cups. Now if there is a change, they can choose which world cup to participate in and which to skip. That way they will not end up participating in every tournament," the source said.
Also read: High time that I stop feeling pressure and see my game from a different perspective: Archer Deepika Kumari after early Olympic exit
Also the existing MQS (Minimum Qualification Score) could be replaced by MOQS (Minimum Olympic Qualification Score), and if NRAI sources are to believed, a shooter will need to reach a minimum score set by the ISSF to go to the Olympics.
"Though it is comparatively tougher to get quotas in the world championships in which the entries are the highest, there will also be the continental events like the Asian Shooting Championships which will offer more quota places than before.
"Even the world championships will probably carry more quota places than before with the world cups shorn of qualifying status." Around 360 shooters from as many as 100 countries participated across 15 events at the Tokyo Olympics shooting competition.
India's 15-strong squad failed to win a single medal, returning empty-handed from the Games for the second straight time, five years after the disaster in Rio 2016.
The MQS is a minimum score that a shooter "must have recorded at least once in the set timeframe, in order to become eligible" to take part in the Olympic Games or in the Youth Olympic Games.
The Minimum Qualification Scores for each shooting event are designated by the ISSF.
The qualification system for shooting is based on quota places.
News source: PTI
Tokyo Debacle: NRAI executives to be assessed, three-part review underway
New Delhi, Aug 12 (Olympic News) An "individual with the right credentials" is set to evaluate the performance of the Indian shooting federation's executives, which will form part of a three-way review prompted by the shooters' horror run at the Tokyo Olympics.
The three-part review is already underway, an insider in the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) told PTI on the condition of anonymity.
For the second successive time, the Indian shooting team returned from the Olympics empty-handed, belying a billion hopes after promising to deliver like never before.
Instead of stepping up their performance in Tokyo, the 15-strong squad crumbled under the mighty Olympic pressure.
"A review is already underway and it is being held in three parts. First the athletes, then the coaches and support and that will be followed by the executives of the national federation," he said on Thursday.
Asked if NRAI president Raninder Singh will also be assessed, sources responded in the positive and pointed out that the federation chief himself was open to the idea, having spoken on similar lines during the Games in Tokyo.
"Somebody with right credentials will evaluate the performance of the federation's executives. He will look into things like where the federation may have lacked as far as the preparation for the Olympics was concerned.
"So this review is not like it's going to leave out the federation," he said.
Before the federation's top office-bearers are evaluated, the NRAI is conducting a review of its own, involving the shooters, coaches and support staff, with the national federation intent on making radical changes to the setup after the disastrous outing in the Japanese capital.
Also read: Nobody in NRAI wanted me as coach except president Raninder Singh: Jaspal Rana
"You can surely expect big changes in the whole setup and it's not restricted to the coaches. Everyone will be thoroughly evaluated as it tries to find out the reasons behind the failure in Tokyo," an official said.
"The shooters, coaches and support staff are being reviewed by the NRAI president, secretary (Rajiv Bhatia) and secretary general (D V Seetharama Rao)," he said.
The campaign in Tokyo also had its share of controversies with stories on the long-standing conflict between young pistol ace Manu Bhaker and her former coach Jaspal Rana grabbing the limelight and doing a demoralised team no good.
"Everybody in the federation is angry with the way things panned out prior and during the Games. The president is also very disappointed. It was quite ugly and all these things are part of the assessment," he added.
Admitting that the performance was way below expectations, Raninder had promised a postmortem after the Games, including overhauling the coaching staff to better prepare the players for big events.
"Definitely the performances have not been on expected lines and I have spoken of an overhaul of coaching and support staff as I feel something is lacking in getting our shooters prepared for these big occasions. Clearly the talent is there and we have seen it here as well," he had said.
It's the second straight time in five Olympics that the Indian shooters are returning from the Games empty-handed, having met the same fate at the 2016 Rio Games five years ago, after which an Abhinav Bindra-led panel recommended a slew of reforms in the way shooting was run in the country.
News source: PTI
Nobody in NRAI wanted me as coach except president Raninder Singh: Jaspal Rana
New Delhi, Aug 11 (Olympic news) Indian shooting could soon reach a point of no return if there is no fairness in selection of coaches and athletes, no fixing of accountability and no discipline, reckons Jaspal Rana.
Dronacharya awardee coach Rana has also revealed that "nobody" wanted him to be a part of the Indian shooting coaching setup except the national federation (NRAI) president Raninder Singh.
Amid the bitter mudslinging in the wake of the Indian shooters' disastrous outing at the Tokyo Olympics, the 1994 Asian Games gold medallist said it's high time the problems facing the sport in the country are fixed.
"We need absolute fairness in selection of both coaches and shooters, fixing of accountability and there cannot be a place for non-performers in the team," Rana told PTI during a chat.
But the 45-year-old former shooter was quick to add that the bunch that failed to deliver in Tokyo comprised mostly youngsters, who will gain in experience and mature by the time the next Olympics come calling.
The young shooters should be backed, he said, as there is no dearth of talent among them.
"We don't need to train them, they already know there game, we need to protect them, which was not there. That's what I think, but then, nobody wanted me in the federation except the president," Rana added.
Indian shooters failed to fire at the Olympics for the second straight time and Rana said it is not fair on the part of the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) president Singh to blame him for the debacle.
Also read: Mirabai Chanu an inspiration for the future generations to come
Reacting to the failures of top medal prospects such as Manu Bhaker and Saurabh Chaudhary at the Olympics, Raninder had said there was "just one negative factor in the whole thing (wrangling within the team)." "I am referring to Jaspal Rana," the NRAI chief had said referring to the internal dispute among coaches in the pistol squad prior to leaving for the long training-cum-competition tour of Croatia.
Rana said the problem started after pistol shooter Chinki Yadav secured India a quota place during the Asian Championship in Doha in 2019.
While Rana was vocal about not being in favour of Manu competing in three events at the Olympics -- 10 metre air pistol, mixed team event and 25 metre pistol -- as he felt it was "too much for a young athlete to handle", Manu felt otherwise.
"They are just making me the scapegoat after what happened in Tokyo. They can't just pass the buck to me for Manu Bhaker's failure. What were the coaches doing in Tokyo? I was not there with them at the Olympics," Rana said.
"There was no accountability, so many coaches were there.. you just need one head chef. I don't do personal coaching, Raninder knows everything, people took advantage of the situation.
Regarding Manu's failure at the Games, he said, "I am not blaming that child, she is a kid." The final breaking point between the two came during the New Delhi World Cup in March when the shooter fet "ignored" by Rana and requested the NRAI to change her coach.
On his part, Rana said he was always ready to coach her or any other shooter, provided they listened to his advice.
Despite the bitter fallout and mudslinging over the last few weeks, Rana said he is "always ready to help the shooters out and serve in the best interest of the country."
News source: PTI
Tokyo refuses to allot additional slot for Paralympian shooter, SC informed
New Delhi, Aug 3 (Olympics news) The Supreme Court was informed on Tuesday that "Tokyo has refused to allot additional slot" for Paralympian shooter Naresh Kumar Sharma, who was to be included as additional participant for the upcoming Paralympics in Japan as per the apex court's order to the PCI.
The top court granted liberty to Sharma to approach the Delhi High Court and request it to expeditiously take up his appeal against its single-judge order which had refused to interfere with his non-selection for Tokyo Paralympics, scheduled for later this month.
A bench of justices A M Khanwilkar and Sanjiv Khanna passed the order after senior advocate Vikas Singh, appearing for Sharma, said it is a classic case as "Tokyo has refused to allot additional slot" to the petitioner as there were 10 slots - eight for men and two for women participants.
The apex court had Monday ordered the Paralympics Committee of India (PCI) to immediately include the five-time Paralympian as an additional participant for the sporting mega-event in Japan which is scheduled to commence from August 24.
At the outset, Singh told the bench on Tuesday that Sharma's appeal pending before a division bench of the high court could be heard Wednesday and it could be decided whether Sharma or the other player should go.
He said the high court can also decide whether Sharma can go as a reserve for the Paralympics.
Referring to the issue of players being already in bubble, Singh said, "35 persons have tested positive after reaching there".
“Accordingly, we dispose of this Special Leave Petition (SLP) with liberty to the petitioner to approach the division bench of the high court and request for taking up the appeal expeditiously,” the bench said in its order.
The top court was hearing Sharma's plea challenging the July 30 order of a division bench of the high court which had posted his petition relating to his non-selection for the upcoming games for hearing on August 6.
In his plea filed in the apex court, Sharma, an Arjuna awardee, had said that last date of selection for shooting in Tokyo Paralympic is August 2 and if the matter is heard by the high court on August 6, it would make his petition for selection infructuous.
Sharma had said that a division bench of the high court had on July 30 sought responses of the PCI and the Centre on his appeal against its single-judge order and posted the matter for hearing on August 6.
In his plea in the apex court, he had said that his counsel had tried for an early date of hearing before the high court since, as per policy of PCI, the deadline for sending names of final selected candidates for participation in the games is August 2.
"The petitioner humbly seeks intervention of this court in the present matter as the legitimate opportunity of the petitioner to participate in Tokyo Paralympics in R7 event and consequently bring laurels to the country will be lost if the arbitrary, discriminatory and capricious selection of the shooter in R7 event by the selection committee of PCI is allowed,” said the plea filed in the top court.
Also read: HC asks PCI to take instructions on 5-time Paralympian shooter Naresh Sharma’s plea over non-selection for Tokyo games
During the July 30 hearing before the high court, Sharma's counsel had submitted that the event will start from August 24, and August 2 is the deadline for Tokyo 2020 organising committee to receive sports entry forms submitted by the National Paralympic Committee (NPC).
The counsel had urged the high court to list the matter on an early date, however, the bench had said the petitioner should have approached the court a little earlier and not at the last moment.
On July 27, the high court's single-judge order had said that PCI's conduct in relation to the selection of another player over Sharma was “unbecoming of a public sporting body” which has to maintain a fair, transparent and inclusionary approach.
The court had, however, refused to interfere with the selection of the other player over Sharma at this belated stage, noting that the shooting team was already in a bubble.
It had however asked the Union Sports Ministry to examine the aspect and take action, if necessary.
News source: PTI
Indian shooting staring at radical changes after Tokyo flop show
New Delhi, Aug 2 (Olympic news) The Indian shooters entered Japanese shores with hopes of winning a handful of medals but are leaving with only their baggages both material and psychological.
The Indian shooting ecosystem underwent radical changes after its marksmen and markswomen fired a blank during a horror run at the Rio Olympics five years ago, belying a billion hopes after promising to deliver like never before.
Instead of stepping up their performance in Tokyo, the 15-strong squad crumbled under the mighty Olympic pressure.
What does it take to win at the Olympics? In the course of their stay in the Japanese capital, the Indian shooters failed to answer the question, having entered their biggest examination on the back of an unprecedented run and soaring expectations.
By some, the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) president Raninder Singh's promise to "overhaul" the coaching staff after the ongoing Games, with the 25m and 50m events still to go, was seen as "premature".
However, it didn't have any impact on the squad as its shooters ended their campaign on a disastrous note, failing to win a single podium with Saurabh Chaudhary being the lone finalist.
The campaign also had its share of controversies with stories on the long-standing conflict between young pistol ace Manu Bhaker and her former coach Jaspal Rana grabbing the limelight and doing an already demoralised team no good.
On the final day of competitions, the young Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar and the seasoned Sanjeev Rajput failed to make the finals of the men's 50m rifle 3 positions event, finishing a lowly 21st and 32nd respectively in the qualifications.
Admitting that the performance was below expectations, Raninder said there will be a postmortem and he would look into an overhaul of the coaching staff to better prepare the players for big events.
"Definitely the performances have not been on expected lines and I have spoken of an overhaul of coaching and support staff as I feel something is lacking in getting our shooters prepared for these big occasions...
"Clearly the talent is there and we have seen it here as well," he said.
Was it the coaches, hype or pressure? What was the reason behind the Indian shooters' failure that no one had expected? Was there anything lacking in preparation, was the reported factionalism among coaches the reason or the problem lay in the attitude? It's the second straight time in five Olympics that the Indian shooters are returning from the Games empty-handed, having met the same fate at the 2016 Rio Games five years ago, after which an Abhinav Bindra-led panel recommended a slew of reforms in the way shooting was run in the country.
Also read: India's shooting campaign comes to a disappointing end
Tough questions will certainly be asked of the national federation, the coaches and the shooters as well, about why they were not able to replicate their excellent showing of the ISSF World Cups in recent years, in Tokyo.
To be fair to the NRAI, the federation put in a lot of effort and achieved success too, in arranging a long training-cum-competition tour of Croatia at a time when India was reeling under a devastating second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"At the end of the day, the only thing I have to say is I can't excuse non-performance.
"On our part, we have done whatever that is humanly possible in the build-up for preparing the shooters. We followed the recommendation of the (Bindra) committee to the tee, analysing after Rio where things might have gone wrong," Raninder said.
The NRAI boss also pointed out that most of the shooters competing in Tokyo were very young and may have fallen to the pressure of participating at an event as grand as the Olympics.
In the entire shooting competition, six countries shared one gold medal apiece while a total of 19 nations claimed medals in the sport at the Games.
Among major shooting powerhouses that failed to win a medal were Germany, Sweden, Norway and Hungary, besides India.
Other major countries like Britain, Italy and France won a medal each. San Marino pulled off the biggest surprise in the Games, winning two medals.
But, as far as shooting in the Tokyo Games is concerned, India ended up being the biggest letdown.
News source: PTI