India clinched its fourth gold medal at the 19th Asian Games when Manu Bhaker, Esha Singh, and Rhythm Sangwan triumphed in the women’s 25m pistol team event, narrowly edging out China for the top spot. India’s total score was 1759, with China close behind at 1756.
Manu Bhaker is a prominent Indian Olympian known for her excellence in shooting. She made her mark on the international stage at the 2018 ISSF World Cup, where she achieved a remarkable feat by winning two gold medals. Her accomplishments were historic, as she became the youngest Indian athlete to secure a gold medal at the ISSF World Cup. Additionally, in her maiden appearance at the 2018 Commonwealth Games, Bhaker earned the gold medal in the women’s 10m air pistol event at just 16 years of age, marking a significant milestone in her career. She is the one who led the standings after the precision stage of qualification on the first day, and continued her impressive shooting in the rapid stage, earning a total of 590 points and securing the top position.
Esha Singh, born on January 1, 2005, is a talented Indian amateur shooter known for her remarkable achievements. In 2018, she achieved the title of national champion in the 10m Air Pistol category. The following year, in 2019, she secured a silver medal at the Junior World Cup held in Suhl, Germany, and went on to claim two gold medals at the Asian Junior Championships in the 10m Air Pistol Women (AP60W) and 10m Air Pistol Mixed Team (APMIX) events. Apart from her excellence in the 10m Air Pistol discipline, She also actively competes in the 25m Standard Pistol and 25m Pistol events. She claimed the fifth spot with 586 points.
Rhythm Sangwan is an accomplished Indian pistol shooter who primarily competes in the 10m Air Pistol and 25m Pistol events. She has earned medals in various Shooting World Cups and Shooting Championships, showcasing her talent and achievements at both the junior and senior levels. Her strong performance on the second day placed her seventh with 583 points. Bhaker and Singh both advanced to the individual 25m pistol final, while Sangwan missed out due to the two-per-country rule. Earlier in the day, India also earned a silver medal in the women’s 50m 3-Positions rifle team event.
The team, consisting of Sift Kaur Samra, Ashi Chouksey, and Manini Kaushik, finished second with a total score of 1764 points. Samra and Chouksey displayed outstanding performances throughout their three series, with a particular highlight in the standing section. Their performances secured them spots in the top 8 and earned them qualifications for the individual final. Samra’s impressive total score of 594 even equaled a new Asian record for qualification, underscoring their exceptional shooting abilities.