Paralympics: Keralite Sidhartha Babu misses final berth narrowly

Sidhartha Babu
Sidhartha Babu missed the final by a whisker. File photo

Tokyo: No Indian shooter could make the finals of the mixed 50m rifle prone SH1 event of the Paralympics with newly-discovered star Avani Lekhara ending 28th in the qualification here on Sunday.

Keralite Sidhartha Babu came closest to making the cut but he missed the mark by a whisker, ending ninth in the qualification round. Sidhartha shot a score of 617.2, which was just 0.2 behind China's Chao Dong (617.4).

Lekhara, who won a 10m air rifle gold and a 50m rifle 3 positions bronze, came up with a score of 612 to end way down at 28th. It was nonetheless a stupendous Games performance from the 19-year-old debutant, who became the first Indian woman to claim a shooting medal and a Games gold medal.

The third Indian in fray, Deepak, ended third from bottom at 46th after shooting a score of 602.2.

Athletes in SH1 Rifle have an impairment in their legs, for example amputations or paraplegia.

The mixed event features shooters of both genders.

India's shooting campaign thus came to an end with an unprecedented haul of five medals, including two gold.

Apart from Lekhara, 19-year-old Manish Narwal too struck gold, in the men's 50m pistol SH1 event.

Singhraj Adana also claimed two medals in the competition, a silver in 50m pistol SH1 and a bronze in 10m air pistol SH1 events. 

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