By Nitin Srivastava
New Delhi [India], March 20 (ANI): Two Indian shooters and an international shooter have tested positive for coronavirus sending shock waves in the ongoing International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) World Cup Rifle/Pistol/Shotgun which began at the Dr Karni Singh Shooting range (DKSSR) on Friday.
The roommates of the COVID positive athletes have been isolated and the two Indian shooters are quarantined. However, their teammates have returned a negative COVID result. Both Indian shooters are from the 10m air pistol category.
“Two Indian shooters have been tested positive for COVID. Their roommates are placed in isolation. Both shooters are 10m air pistol category and quarantined as per the protocol. An international shooter has also tested positive,” a source in the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) told ANI.
Earlier ahead of the showpiece event, an unnamed international shooter also tested positive for coronavirus. Hence, the count has gone to four since the start of the mega event.
“One shooter tested COVID positive just before the start of ISSF Shooting World Cup, the player has been shifted to the hospital and his roommate has also been isolated,” Rajeev Bhatia, the secretary of the NRAI had told ANI.
Meanwhile, India had a good opening competition day as three shooters, world number one Divyansh Singh Panwar and Arjun Babuta in the Men’s 10M Air Rifle and Anjum Moudgil in the corresponding women’s event, made it through to the finals at the end of the 60-shot qualifying round on Friday.
The men got the ball rolling as India number two Arjun Babuta shot a high-quality 631.8 to finish third in the 39-strong field. World number one Divyansh Singh Panwar also followed him to the eight-man final slated for Saturday, with a 629.1 which gave him sixth position overall.
Nam Taeyun of Korea topped the men’s field with a 632.1 and given his current world rank of 18 and the fact that all other finalists are not eligible except his own teammate Choo Byounggil who is ranked way below him, he should bag the only available Tokyo Olympics quota based on world rankings. Deepak Kumar, the third Indian in the field finished 12th with a score of 626.4.
In the Women’s 10M Air Rifle, world number four and Tokyo quota holder Anjum Moudgil was the lone Indian to qualify. She shot 629.6 to come in second in the 48-strong field, behind Hungary’s Denes Eszter who shot 629.8. (ANI)