New Delhi, June 4 (Ajit Weekly News) India ended their campaign at the ISSF World Cup in Baku with a gold in 50m rifle 3-positions mixed team competition, after Swapnil Kusale and Ashi Chouksey beat Ukranians Serhiy Kulish and Daria Tykhova 16-12 in the gold-medal match on Saturday.
This was India’s second gold in the Baku World Cup after the women’s air rifle team had won one earlier. India also have three silver from the tournament and ended second behind South Korea.
It was also Swapnil Kusale’s first gold and third medal overall in the Baku World Cup, after he won silver in men’s 3P individual and men’s team competitions.
It was a hard-fought win for the pair of Swapnil and Ashi. In the first qualification stage, they finished fourth with a combined score of 881/900 to qualify for stage two. The Ukranian pair finished second to also march into the top-eight stage.
In stage two, Swapnil and Ashy finished second with an effort of 583/600. It was the same score as the Ukranians but the latter topped on countback, going into the gold-medal match with a mental edge over the Indians.
In the final, Ukraine started stronger and opened up a 6-2 lead after the first four single-shot series. But the Indian pair fought back admirably, winning six of the next eight series to go ahead 14-10.
Serhiy and Daria were not ones to give up and narrowed the deficit down to 14-12. But the Indians closed out professionally for a well-earned victory.
This was India’s second ISSF Rifle/Pistol World Cup of the year. They had topped the first World Cup stage in Cairo. The rifle and pistol teams then opted out of the Rio World Cup in April.
–Ajit Weekly News