London: India's rifle
shooter Gagan Narang clinched the bronze medal in the men's
10-metre air rifle event of the 2012 London Olympics while his
illustrious compatriot and defending champion Abhinav Bindra
failed to qualify for the final round at Royal Artillery Barracks
The gold went to Romanian Alin George Moldoveanu with a total
score of 702.1 (599 qualifying, 103.1 final) and Italian Niccolo
Campriani bagged the silver with 701.5 (599 qualifying, 102.5
Narang, who is participating in his third Games, had a total score
of 701.1 (598 qualifying, 103.1 final). Going into the final
round, Narang was third.
In the final round, Narang had a series of 10.7, 9.7, 10.6, 10.7,
10.4, 10.6, 9.9, 9.5, 10.3 and 10.7 to give India its first medal
from the London Games.
It was the third time in row that Indian shooters had won medals
at the Olympics. Double trap shooter Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore
won the silver in 2004, Bindra gave India a historic gold in
Beijing, and now Narang has bagged a bronze in London.
Bindra, India's only individual Olympic gold medallist, failed to
qualify as he shot 594 to finish 16th out of 47 contestants.
In the qualifying round, Narang, who missed the final round in
Beijing Games on a countback, was in his elements. The 29-year-old
Hyderabadi shot perfect series of 100 in all the rounds except the
third when he scored 98. He also shot 53 inner 10s.
Bindra had just two series of perfect 100 in the third and the
fourth round. He shot 99s in the first, second and fifth and
faltered in the sixth, when he shot 97. The top eight shooters
qualified for the final round. Former Olympic champion and Beijing
Games silver medallist Zhu Qinan of China also failed to qualify
for the final round.