Greater Noida shooter bags gold in national championship
Twenty-year-old Shreya Saksena, an ace shooter from Greater Noida, bagged the gold medal in the national-level 17th Kumar Surendra Singh Memorial Shooting Championship held in Delhi on Sunday.
Shreya won gold in the ‘50 metre 3 position’ junior women event during the weeklong championship event held at Dr Karni Singh shooting range in Tughlaqabad, New Delhi, which is also where she practices. The event, organised by the National Rifle Association of India, began on July 26 and saw participation of hundreds of athletes from across the country.
The Greater Noida resident, though happy with the result, said the finals event was gruelling. In the ‘50 metre 3 position’ event, a shooter has to complete 60 shots in an hour and 45 minutes, holding the rifle in three different positions. After every 20 shots in one position, the shooter has 200 seconds to change the stance, adjust the suit and aim for the next shot, thereby making it one of the most gruelling events of the championship.
“I had done well in the kneeling and prone position in the qualifying match and was leading in the event. In the finals, I did not leave anything to chance so I led all the way to a comfortable 10.4 point lead,” she said.
Nine shooters participated in the final event that Shreya topped with 452.6 points. This victory comes in the wake of the recent Junior World Cup ISSF Championship in Germany, in which Shreya failed to secure any of the top three positions. However, she does not see it as a setback.
“Participation in the Junior World Cup has been a turning point in my career when it comes to gaining confidence and honing my shooting skills. I am now focussed on the senior trials starting from August 2,” she said.
The third-year BA student at Indraprastha College for Women in Delhi University was born and brought up in Jammu. It was only two years ago that she moved to AWHO Society in Greater Noida with her parents and sister Saumya, another a budding shooter.
Excited over her performance, Shreya’s father Colonel Anurag Saksena said he now wants his daughter to perform in the same manner in senior events in the future.
“Shreya showed great equipoise and focus during the finals, (which is) something she had observed during the Junior World Cup. Her focus is clearly on the senior events now,” he said.