Martin Strempfl wins online shooting championship

NEW DELHI, Jun 14: Olympic-bound Martin Strempfl of Austria once again stamped his class by winning the gold medal at the seventh International Online Shooting Championship (IOSC).

Martin, who had bettered the world mark by 0.2 point in the qualification, raised his performance by several notches to win gold on Sunday night with a brilliant score of 255.8, which was 3 points more than the final world mark.

His success in both events is proof of the form Martin is in before a critical phase. At the recently held ‘TOPGUN’ tournament, he beat Serbia’s Milenko Sebic, another Olympic bound shooter for gold.

On Sunday, he got the better of world No.3 and Olympic-bound Lucas Kozeniesky (251.5) of USA.

The championship was organised by former India shooter Shimon Sharif.

The bronze went to India’s Rudrankksh Patil, who staged a fine recovery towards the end to surge ahead of William Shaner (208.8) of USA with a score of 230.1. Had William maintained his position, the tournament’s three Olympic-bound shooters would have made it 1-2-3.

With five perfect 10.9s, there was little Martin could do wrong in the final.

“I showed my best ever shooting, everything was perfect, and I have no words to describe the performance,” he said, adding taking the lead at the beginning calmed him down.

For Rudrankksh, the 10.6 on the 20th shot showed how critical mental strength can be in crunch situations.

The young Indian, a winner of a previous edition of IOSC, was in danger of being eliminated on the fourth place, but that was not to be.

“I thought of focussing on each shot and give my optimum performance. That made the difference between finishing fourth and bronze.”

The experience of competing with Olympic-bound athletes left him richer in experience.

The other three Indians in the final, junior world champion Hriday Hazarika finished fifth while junior Asian champion Yash Vardhan and Youth Olympic Games silver medallist Shahu Mane took the sixth and seventh place, respectively. (PTI)