Indian contingent in Commonwealth Games at Gold Coast, Australia has been moving ahead by securing more honours for the country. Decorated shooter Heena Sidhu has won her second medal of the 2018 Commonwealth Games, taking gold in the women’s 25m pistol (Precision/Rapid) finals at the Belmont Shooting Centre on Tuesday.
The 28-year-old Sidhu, decorated with the Times of India Sports Awards (TOISA) Shooter of the Year in February last year – shot a Commonwealth Games (CWG) record 38 to cap off a dominant performance in the eight-member final.
This is Heena’s first CWG individual gold medal – and second overall, after a team gold in 2010 – and second of the ongoing Gold Coast Games, after she claimed silver in the 10m air pistol event on Sunday. Overall, India’s shooting contingent has won eight medals in the ongoing CWG.
Heena maintained her place in the top three during the finals. She moved into top spot with a sequence of 5, 5, 4 and 4 and then pulled marginally away from the next best, Australia’s Elana Galiabovitch, with final shots of 3 and 4.
Galiabovitch pocketed her second medal of the Games, a bronze on Sunday in the 10m air pistol. Malaysia’s Alia Sazan Azhahari took bronze with a score of 26.
Heena is coming off a successful 2017, in which she won three gold medals and another at the Commonwealth Shooting Championships. Paired with Jitu Rai, she won the 10m mixed team air pistol event at the ISSF World Cup in Delhi, the ISSF World Cup Rifle/Pistol series in Gabala, Azerbaijan and ISSF World Cup final. Individually, she won a gold medal in the 10m air pistol event at the Commonwealth Shooting Championships and bronze medals at the 10th Asian Championship and the Grand Prix of Liberation Plaza Shooting Championships in the Czech Republic.
Heena has made two trips to the CWG in 2010 – winning gold in the team 10m air pistol event and silver in the individual 10m air pistol – and 2014 where she qualified for the 10m final but failed to leave a mark.
In April 2014, Sidhu became the first Indan pistor shooter to reach number one in world rankings by the International Shooting Sports Federation. In 2013, she became the first Indian pistor shooter to win a god medal in the ISS World Cup finals when she won the 10 metre air pistol event.
On the sixth day India maintained third place in the medal telly in the Commonwealth Games. After Heena Sidhu’s Gold on Tuesday, India has scored 11 Gold, 4 Silver and 5 Bronze (20). Australia continues to dominate the tally with 41 Gold, 34 Silver and 34 Bronze (109) followed by England with 23 Gold, 26 Silver and 20 Bronze medals (69).
Earlier on Monday, the fifth day at CWG, India won its 10th gold by defeating Malaysia in the Badminton Mixed Team event at the Commonwealth Games 2018. On the fifth day of the games, ace shooter Jitu Rai scored the first gold in the 10-meter air pistol event, while Om Mitharval claimed bronze for the same event. The men’s table tennis team clinched the ninth gold for India.