New Delhi, Jan 30:
A host of fresh faces will take to the range alongside renowned Indian shooters such as Jitu Rai, Gagan Narang and Heena Sidhu when the year’s first ISSF World Cup begins in the capital on February 24.
Though nine of the 12 shooters who competed in the Rio Olympics will be seen in action, quite a few newcomers have been added to the squad, which will not have in its rank Olympic champion Abhinav Bindra for the first time in nearly two decades.
Two big names — also part of the Rio Games — to have missed out are former world number one Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Commonwealth Games silver medallist Ayonika Paul.
Kynan Chenai, Mairaj Ahmad Khan, Narang, Jitu, Heena, Chain Singh and Gurpreet Singh have been able to retain their place in the national squad that was selected on the basis of the performance in the last National championship in Pune and two selection trials.
After the Olympic debacle, an overhaul was on the cards in Indian shooting.
Narang has been able to book a berth only in the rifle prone event and not in air rifle or rifle 3-position events.
14-year-old Shapath Bharadwaj has made the men’s double trap team along with Sangram Dahiya and Ankur Mittal. (PTI)