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Farmer son Saurabh Chaudhary shooter Asian Games gold at 16 age
16-year-old Asian Games debutant Saurabh Chaudhary has won India’s first shooting gold of the 2018 Asian Games while compatriot Abhishek Verma won bronze in the Men’s 10m Air Pistol event in Indonesia. Chaudhary shot a Games record of 240.7 to clinch the top honors while Verma finished with 219.3.
The 16-year-old Chaudhary, who topped the qualifying round, shot a Games record score of 240.7 to pip Japan’s Tomoyuki Matsuda (239.7) in an exciting final to add a gold to India’s shooting tally of two silver and a bronze this Asiad.
Hobby shooter Abhishek Verma, also making his Asian Games debut at 29, settled for the bronze medal in the same event with a score of 219.3.
In the second position for most of the final, Chaudhary grabbed the lead after Matsuda fired 8.9 in his penultimate shot. The Indian went ahead with a 10.2 off his second-last shot and held the nerve to stay ahead.
Expectations were high from Chaudhary as he had broken the world record on way to winning a gold in the Junior World Cup in Germany a couple of months ago.
But not many thought that he would emulate the golden feat achieved by the likes of Jaspal Rana, Randhir Singh, Jitu Rai and Ronjan Sodhi at such a young.
“I did not feel any pressure,” said Chaudhary, who picked up the sport only three years ago when asked about the competition that included Matsuda and Jin Jingoh from South Korea, the multiple-time Olympic and world champion.
He did not show any sign of nerves even in the qualification held earlier in the day, bossing it with a 586. Jongoh was second in the qualification while Verma finished sixth.
Chaudhary, a student of class XI, will be off to the World Championships after the Games.
He learned the tricks of the trade at Amit Sheoran’s academy at Benoli near Baghpat, 53 kilometers from Meerut. Whenever he is home, he helps his father in the farming business.
“I like farming. We don’t get much time off from training but whenever I do, I go back to my Village (Kalina) and help my father,” said Chaudhary.
Also Read: India won the First Gold in Asian Games 2018