Jitu Rai finished his qualifying with a scintillating set of seven 10-pointers to make it to the final after an inconsistent start – but his poor form carried into the final as he crashed out within minutes with a paltry score of 78.7.
The 10m air pistol final starts with two series of three shots each – it is here that Jitu faltered, scoring just 29.8 and 30 in each. That meant he had to outclass Russian Vladimir Gontcharov to avoid elimination.
Jitu’s next two shots fetched him 9.7 and 10.1, taking him to a total of 78.7, which was 0.3 less than Gontcharov’s, resulting in the Indian getting eliminated.
But all hope is not lost – Jitu is ranked World No 3 in the 50m pistol category as well, and that’s his pet event, in which he won gold at the Asian Games in 2014.
Jitu also won a Commonwealth gold at the 50m event and a silver at the World Championships in the same year.
So while his exit came in disappointing style today, Jitu will be back in action on 10 August at 5.30 PM – as he and Prakash Nanjappa take the field for India in the qualifiers of the 50m pistol event.
Feature image source: PTI