Olympics: Vijay Kumar gives India second medal from the ranges (Second Lead)

August 3rd, 2012 - 11:52 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Aug 3 (IANS) Army marksman Vijay Kumar gave India its second medal of the London Olympics, winning the silver in the men’s 25 metre rapid fire pistol event after his compatriot and rifleman Jaydeep Karmakar narrowly missed a bronze, finishing fourth in the men’s 50-metre prone event here Friday.

Leuris Pupo kept his cool to win Cuba’s first gold of the Olympics. Pupo scored 34 to edge out India’s Vijay Kumar, who took silver with 30.

China’s Ding Feng won bronze after being edged out by Kumar by one point in the final elimination round at the Royal Artillery Barracks.

Russia’s Alexei Klimov had set a new world record of 592 in qualifying, but struggled in the final after two low-scoring rounds early on, and eventually finished fourth after failing to make it into the final two medal rounds.

It was an exciting battle as the rapid fire pistol event was being held under new rules, where one of the six shooters was being eliminated after every round. German Christian Reitz was the first to be eliminated followed by Chinese Jian Zhang and Russian Alexei Klimov.

In the final round, all the six shooters had to start from scratch as their qualification scores are not counted unlike other shooting events.

Vijay, who was fourth in the qualification, was in his element right from the start in the final round. He shot a perfect five in the first series to take joint lead. Vijay followed it up with a series of 4, 4, 3, 4, 4 and 4 to stay in the medal contention. But going into the final round it was all over for Vijay and he managed just two, his worst, in the final series.

The marksman became the first Indian pistol shooter to win an Olympic medal. He is also the second Indian after double trap shooter Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore to win a silver medal. Rathore won the maiden individual Olympic silver for India at 2004 Athens.

Vijay’s medal was second for India in the 2012 London Games after rifle shooter Gagan Narang had won bronze in the men’s 10 metre air rifle event here Monday.

Narang, however, flopped Friday in the men’s 50m rifle prone event where his teammate Karmakar excelled.

Karmakar finished a creditable fourth in the finals while Gagan Narang failed to qualify for the final round.

Karmakar shot an overall score of 699.1, including 595 in the qualification and 104.1 in the medal round. His score in the final was third highest among the eight shooters.

Narang finished a disappointing 18th.

Belarusian shooter Sergei Martynov kept a steady hand to take the gold by a dominant margin.

Martynov, twice a bronze medallist in the event, set a world record final score of 705.5 to win by 4.2 points after earlier equalling the world record in qualifying with a maximum score of 600.

Silver went to Belgium’s Lionel Cox, who edged out Slovenian bronze medallist Rajmond Debevec by 0.2 points.

Ukraine’s Artur Avvazyan, the gold medallist in Beijing four years ago, scored 593 in qualifying and missed out on the final, as did Australia’s Warren Potent, who won bronze in 2008.

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