Indian pistol ace Manu Bhaker, won India's sixth medal of the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup Rifle/Pistol competition in Bhopal, picking up a bronze in the women's 25m pistol at the M.P. State Shooting Academy range. China, however, continued their domination of the tournament, winning a sixth gold medal out of the eight decided so far.
In the women's 25m pistol, two Indians made the ranking round with Manu shooting a solid 294 in the second rapid-fire stage to finish third with a score of 584. Esha Singh finished seventh with a score of 581. Both Indians found themselves in the first ranking match together from where eventual gold medallist Doreen Vennekamp of Germany and Manu qualified for the medal match with 14 hits each out of 20. Esha finished third with 11 hits while Mexico's Zavala was fourth with 10 hits.
Two Chinese shooters, Xiong Yaxuan and eventual silver medallist Du Ziyue came through from the other ranking match with 12 hits apiece as the Korean and Singaporean shooters were eliminated. In the medal match, where the fourth shooter is eliminated after the first four five-shot series, Xiong bowed out with 12 hits, confirming Manu's medal. Doreen was leading at that stage with 16 hits while both Manu and Ziyue were tied on 14 hits each.
The Indian fought hard thereafter but her opponents did not falter, which meant Manu took the bronze medal after the sixth series with 20 hits to her name. Doreen finished with 30 hits at the end of 40 shots to Ziyue's 29. This was the German's second medal in Bhopal, after winning silver in the women's 10m air pistol earlier.
Tomar finishes fourth
Another Indian in the fray - Aishwary Pratap Singh Tomar - narrowly missed out on a medal, with a poor final series of five shots in the 50m Air Rifle 3-Position event sending him down to fourth place. He had earlier topped the qualification round but came up just short in the final.
Tomar went into the final five shots of the allotted 40 in third place, but he was edged out by Swiss Jan Lochbihler, who finished with a score of 407.4. Tomar, who had three series with scores in the 40s in the standing section of the competition, was left to rue his inconsistency as he finished with a score of 405.5.
The Indian challenge in Bhopal continues on Sunday with Anish Bhanwala slated to compete in the Men's Rapid Fire Pistol event.