Shooting will be one of the strongest suits for India at the Tokyo Olympics. The Indian contingent has secured an unprecedented 15 spots in the discipline for the 2020 Olympics and the future looks promising.
The likes of young Indian shooters Saurabh Chaudhary, Rahi Sarnobat and Manu Bhaker will be looking to put their best foot forward in Tokyo. Meanwhile, Olympic-aspirants like Yash Vardhan are making a name for themselves at the international level.
Junior Asian Champion Vardhan, on Sunday, stunned Olympic-bound Martin Strempfl of Austria to bring home the gold medal from the 10m Air Rifle event at the 6thedition of the International Online Shooting Championship (IOSC). The achievement is no mean feat as Strempfl is currently ranked 34th in the world.
The 17-year-old Vardhan shot 251.9, to beat Strempfl by a margin of 1.2 points to win his first IOSC title. Shooters from 20 different countries took part in the two-day competition which was organised by former India marksman Shimon Sharif.
“It’s really nice and helpful to have these online competitions during these times as it not only helped me gain exposure but also helped me in growing into a better shooter. I am very delighted to see today’s results and will be looking forward to continuing it,” Yash Vardhan to PTI.
The teenager has been a sensation at the youth circuit and continues to build on his reputation.
A couple of years back, Vardhan, topped qualification in air rifle with 629.2 across men’s, junior and youth categories and went on to be among the top three in finals in the National Shooting selection trials.
Vardhan had delivered a phenomenal performance, last year, at the Asian Airgun Championships as well. He finished with three gold medals in the event from which India brought home 25 laurels.
There, he won the 10m Air Rifle men's junior event and then went on to clinch the yellow metal in the Team competition with Keval Prajpati and Aishwarya Tomar. He had also combined with Shreya Agarwal to win the Mixed Team Rifle junior event.
Though he failed to win an Olympic quota at the ISSF World Cup in Rio de Janeiro in 2019, Vardhan’s stock has been on a constant rise and he will be one to watch out for in the future.