Proud moment for India when Indian shooter Rahi Sarnobat wins a gold medal in the women’s 25M Pistol, Croatia.
Rahi Sarnobat performed incredibly well to finish and secure the women’s 25m pistol gold medal at the ISSF shooting World Cup on Monday. Teen star Manu Bhaker ended seventh in the same event.
Sarnobat’s gold is India’s first in the ongoing edition after the country secured one silver and two bronze medals earlier in the tournament.
The 30-year-old Sarnobat shot a final score of 39 after qualifying second with a total of 591. Her breathtaking achievement in the final included perfect scores in the third, fourth, fifth and the sixth series.
The silver went to France’s Mathilde Lamolle, who scored 31 in the final.
In the qualification, Sarnobat fired a splendid 296 in the rapid-fire round on Monday. Her precision score was an equally dramatic one of 295 on Sunday.
Rahi Jeevan Sarnobat (Marathi) is a female athlete from India who competes in the 25 meters pistol shooting event. She won her first gold medal at the 2008 Commonwealth Youth Games in Pune, India. She is the first woman to win a gold medal in shooting in an Asian Games for India – she won the gold at the 2018 Jakarta Palembang Asian Games in the women’s 25-meter pistol event.
She had won two gold medals in 2010 Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, the first of the two golds in coming in the 25m pistol pair event with Anisa Sayyed. She had earlier won gold in the 25 m pistol event at the 2008 Youth Commonwealth Games which were held in India.
Personal life and background
Rahi hails from Kolhapur in Maharashtra. Her mentor is fellow Maharashtrian and 50m rifle pro World Champion Tejaswini Sawant. It was while at school that she got introduced to firearms as part of NCC training. She displayed exceptional skills in using firearms from an early age. In the early days of playing the sport, Sarnobat had to navigate through inadequate infrastructure and facilities in her hometown of Kolhapur. She then chose to go for further training in Mumbai, which had better facilities for the sport.
Rahi became India’s first pistol shooter to win a gold medal in the World Cup when she won the 25m pistol event in the ISSF World Cup in Changwon. In the 2014 Commonwealth Games at Glasgow, she won gold in the women’s 25-meter pistol and in the same year, she won the bronze medal in the 25-meter pistol team event at the 2014 Asian Games at Incheon, where she teamed up with Anisa Sayyed and Heena Sidhu.
An injury caused by an accident in 2015 affected her elbow that took almost two years to fully heal. She made it back to the Indian national team and started working with German coach Munkhbayar Dorjsuren, who helped Sarnobat gain physical fitness and mental strength. Interestingly, Dorjsuren was one of Rahi’s competitors at the 2012 Olympics.
Bronze medal in the 2011 World Cup event at Fort Benning led to her selection for the London Olympics in 2012, thereby becoming the first female Indian shooter to qualify for the 25 meters sports pistol event in the Olympics.
In May 2015, Rahi was recommended for the country’s prestigious, Arjuna Award by the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI).
On 22 August 2018, she became the first Indian woman to become an individual Asian Games gold medallist in shooting by winning the 25-meter pistol event with a Games record score of 34. She won the shoot-off against her Thai opponent to get the gold.
It was a proud moment for India when Rahi won the gold medal at the Munich World Cup event in 2019 and was selected for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Now on Monday, June 28th, in a grand momentous achievement, making India ecstatic, Rahi Sarnoba shone through taking the Croatia World Cup; India’s first at the event, in Osijek, Croatia. Good going Rahi, congratulations!