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Shooting World Cup: Skin ailment can't distract Deepak's aim

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By Navneet Singh

Goa, March 17 (IANS) Deepak Kumar, Tokyo Olympic Games quota winner in 10 metres air rifle, went through some anxious moments last month due to a skin ailment. The problem, says the 33-year-old Air Force shooter, was hampering his training.

Deepak was finding it difficult to have a steady stance at the firing range. It also impacted his overall scores in the national selection trials held in the last week of January and early February. However, a medical expert advised him to undergo a minor surgery.

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After a break, the Olympic hopeful is back on the ranges. “All is good. I’ve recovered fully. I should be able to do well on my home ground,” Deepak told IANS after his Wednesday training.

For the New Delhi World Cup, starting on Thursday at Dr Karni Singh Shooting Ranges, the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) had selected a 57-member team. The national camp started March 5. It concluded on Wednesday.

“After the surgery the doctor also recommended Kumar to take rest for some days. During the rest period I had to maintain my weight through a balanced diet. But have resumed physical training now,” said Deepak, a Jakarta Asian Games medallist.

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Thursday is the pre-event training while the main competition will start on Friday. The opening event of the World Cup will be a 10m air rifle in men and women’s group.

Besides Deepak, another Olympic quota winner, Divyansh Singh Panwar, will compete in the 10m air rifle. In the women’s section, the main focus will one on Anjum Moudgil and Apurvi Chandela.

Indian shooters went through normal training on Wednesday and will have another light session on Thursday.

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According to a national level coach, the shooters might need two or three more high intensity competitions to stay on course for the Tokyo Olympics starting on July 23.

The New Delhi World Cup also offers valuable global ranking points.

“The Indian team last participated in the Asian Shooting Championship held in November 2019 in Doha. Since the 2020 season was disrupted due to pandemic all the top shooters were busy training only. The World Cup will be a good platform to start Olympic preparation on a positive note,” said the coach associated with the national team.

—IANS

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