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Steady Shriyanka wins Olympics quota in rifle 3 Position


In the ever-changing landscape of Indian shooting, Shriyanka Sadangi is a constant. The 28-year-old may not have the glitz and glamor of a performance like some of her talented contemporaries, but she has been remarkably consistent in her career over the past decade.

Over the years she has maintained her level high enough to maintain her place among the top five rifle shooters in India

In recent years she has maintained her level high enough to maintain her place among the top five rifle shooters in India. Although this has not always led to a place in a highly competitive top three Indian team, especially in major events such as the world championships and the just concluded Asian Games in Hangzhou, Shriyanka has cope with the difficulties as she comes back stronger. .

As she did at the Asian Shooting Championships in Changwon on Tuesday. It was an opportunity that Shriyanka grabbed with both hands and sealed the Paris Olympics quota for India in 50m 3 position rifle. It was India’s 13th quota for the Paris Olympics. All eight quotas available in rifle events (air rifle and 3-position rifle) have now been sealed by Indian shooters.

“I went there with a positive attitude and apart from two shots in a standing, I was steady,” said Shriyanka.

She qualified for the final in 6th place with a score of 588/600, and finished fourth in the final. Shriyanka, Ashi Chouksey and Ayushi Podder won the team gold with a combined score of 1766 points.

“I did not realize that I had won the quota. It was when my name was announced for the quota as I was coming out of the lane that it hit me,” said the Odisha shooter.

“It’s been a long journey. I’ve had to do a lot of work on myself, whether it’s physical, mental or technical aspects. I’ve learned the hard way. When you compete in a sport for so long and results don’t come as you are. wait, it’s hard to keep yourself motivated.”

Shriyanka passed through several such low stages. “The last Olympic cycle was a huge disappointment when I failed to make the cut for the Indian team for the 2018 World Championships. I carried on the sadness for a long time. I didn’t let it in.”

Back then, Shriyanka was completely focused on air rifle and was one of the best in the event. She lost out to Anjum Moudgil, who was best as she was shooting in both events, 3P because of Anjum’s dedication. Anjum shot a quota for India in the air rifle, that too with silver at the world championships, and maintained her form well enough to maintain her quota going into the Tokyo Olympics.

Shriyanka moved forward and made her shift her focus to 3 positions as she was missing out on a national scale by not being a popular shooter.

Another such disaster occurred during the National Championships in Bhopal in 2021. She was so distraught over her poor performance in the air rifle that she even thought of quitting the sport. Her coach Deepali Deshpande, who has mentored her since she was a junior, was there to give her hope.

“She was very upset. She was like, ‘A new shooter comes and wins and you feel what you’ve done for years’. I told her you have to detach yourself from the result when you’re standing on the lane. She needed a change in her mindset. It’s okay to be emotional, you have to follow a process.”

It was advice that Shriyanka quickly took on board. She won the 3P event and became national champion. “She was always fighting for her place in the team, sometimes losing out by small margins. It’s only natural that you feel that way. The Bhopal nationals were her salvation.”

So, when she couldn’t make it to the team for the Asian Games, Shriyanka was happy to battle her inner demons, especially as she was named in the team for the Asian Championships.

“I was very disappointed but I didn’t accept it. I focused all my energy towards the Asian Championships with the Paris Olympic quota available.”

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