The National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) on Wednesday announced a 28-member squad for the Commonwealth Games (CWG) and a 40-member squad for the Asiad. Top shooters like Abhinav Bindra, Gagan Narang, Samresh Jung and Tejaswini Sawant have secured berths in their respective categories for both CWG (October 3-14) and Asian Games (November 12-27) in Guangzhou, China.
Narang has made the cut in three categories (10m air rifle, 50m prone and 50m 3 position), while Bindra will compete only in the air pistol event. In the women’s category, world champion Tejaswini Sawant will participate in her pet event, the 50m prone and 3 position.
National coach Sunny Thomas is as optimistic as ever. “We have selected the team and it looks good. It is now up to them (shooters) to increase the medal tally from 27 (achieved at Melbourne 2006),” Thomas told DNA on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Jung will spearhead the challenge in the standard pistol event. CK Chaudhary and Navyman Omkar Singh will participate in the free pistol and air pistol events, while Gurpreet Singh will contest in air pistol as well as rapid fire pistol events.
In the shotgun events, world championship gold medallist Asher Noria will replace 2004 Athens Olympics silver medallist Rajyavardhan Rathore. He will be joined by Ronjan Sodhi and Manavjit Singh Sandhu.