Anish Bhanwala Shines in Olympic Trials with Stellar Performance

Reported by Harsh Kumar

In the third Olympic selection trial organized by the NRAI, 21-year-old Anish Bhanwala from Karnal delivered an outstanding performance in the men’s 25m rapid fire pistol event. He shot a perfect five out of five on five occasions out of the eight series he competed in, finishing with a personal best score of 36/40. This impressive score put him five shots ahead of Vijayveer Sidhu, who came in second.

Anish’s coach, Harpreet Singh, was overwhelmed with emotion at the end of the competition. Harpreet, a former Commonwealth Games champion and silver medalist in the rapid-fire event, explained that the most exciting moment for him wasn’t one of Anish’s perfect series, but rather his second-to-last series where he scored four out of five shots. Despite the third shot just missing the mark, Harpreet described the series as technically perfect.

Harpreet emphasized that while shooting may not seem exciting to spectators who only look at the scores, it’s the technique and precision that matter most. He has been coaching Anish since he was 16 and understands the intricacies of the sport. In rapid-fire events, shooters have just four seconds to take five shots once the starting light goes on. According to Harpreet, the key to success is perfect timing: lifting the gun smoothly and taking the first shot in exactly 1.5 seconds, allowing enough time for accurate subsequent shots.

Anish’s penultimate series showcased perfect timing and stability, with his final shot taken exactly at the four-second mark. This demonstrated his nearly perfect technique, a skill he has honed under both Harpreet and three-time Olympic champion Ralf Schumann.

Harpreet is confident that Anish, who secured an Olympic quota at last year’s Asian Championships, is on the right track for the Paris 2024 Olympics. With consistently high qualifying scores and strong finishes in the selection trials, Anish is well-positioned to earn a spot on the Olympic team. Harpreet believes that with continued focus on refining technique in practice sessions, Anish will be ready to perform at his best when it matters most.

The journey to perfection in shooting is ongoing, but Anish’s recent performance indicates he’s close to achieving his peak. Harpreet remains optimistic, looking forward to seeing the results of their hard work at the upcoming Olympics.

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