Explained: What Manu Bhaker needs to do to be on 25m air pistol podium

Manu Bhaker is currently participating in the qualification of her third and final event – the women’s 25m Air Pistol.

Manu Bhaker is the only shooter from the 16-person Indian shooting squad who is participating in three different events. While her women’s 10m Air Pistol campaign ended in a shroud of whodunit, her 10m Air Pistol Mixed team event was not the redemption arc that Manu would have hoped for.

Bhaker is currently participating in the qualification of her third and final event – the women’s 25m Air Pistol. The first stage of qualification, is the precision stage where every shooter must take six five-shot series under a time limit of five minutes. The most points that can be scored are 10. The combined total score for both stages is 600 points and the top eight shooters progress to the final.

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How did she do in the first part of the qualification?

Bhaker performed excellently in the precision stage. The 19-year-old shot two series’ worth 97 and then shot a 98 to be placed fifth at the end of the first stage of the qualification – a display that was capped off by five consecutive 10s in the final of the third series.

The second stage of the qualification will take place at 5.30 AM India time.

What does she have to do in the second stage of the qualification?

The second stage of the qualification is called the rapid stage and in it, Bhaker will need to shoot within three seconds when the light goes green. Red lights last for seven seconds between consecutive greens.

It is crucial for Bhaker to continue the momentum going. Currently in fifth position among all shooters, Bhaker’s qualification to the final is not guaranteed and a poor performance in the rapid stage could lead to the end of her Tokyo Olympics journey.

Are there other Indians in the fray?

Yes, Rahi Sarnobat is currently 25th after 30 shots. Rahi was actually the favourite among the two and had a tad bit of luck going against her yesterday in the precision stage. The Maharashtra shooter had four shots that were 9.9s and if those shots had strayed by a centimetre, Sarnobat would have most likely been within touching distance of the top 8.

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