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Rediff.com  » Sports » At 15, Anish Bhanwala is India's youngest C'wealth Games gold medallist

At 15, Anish Bhanwala is India's youngest C'wealth Games gold medallist

Last updated on: April 13, 2018 12:54 IST

Haryana lad wins men's 25 metres rapid fire pistol at Commonwealth Games with a new Games record

Anish Bhanwal

IMAGE: Anish Bhanwala shows off his medal after winning the men's 25 metres rapid fire pistol event at the Commonwealth Games on Friday. Photograph: Eddie Safarik/Reuters

Anish Bhanwala made history on Friday, becoming India's youngest gold medallist at the Commonwealth Games.

The 15-year-old achieved the feat after firing his way to the gold medal with a Games record in the men's 25 metres rapid fire pistol event at the Belmont Shooting Centre.

 

The Haryana lad shot down Australia's David Chapman's 2014 Glasgow Games record of 24 in the final with a score of 30, which included four series of five each.

The youngest in the six-man final round, he showed nerves of steel and led the more experienced marksmen through the event to emerge deserving champion.

Australia's Sergei Evglevski claimed the silver with a score of 28, while the bronze medal went to Sam Gowin (17) of England.

Neeraj Kumar, India's other entrant in the event, was the second shooter to be eliminated in the final after a shoot-off after scoring 13.

IMAGE: Gold medallist Anish of India, silver medallist Sergei Evglevski of Australia and bronze medallist Sam Gowin of England pose with their medals from the men's 25m rapid fire pistol event at the Commonwealth Games on Friday. Photograph: Eddie Safarik/Reuters

In winning the gold, Anish bettered the record of team mate Manu Bhaker, who had become the youngest Indian Commonwealth Games gold medallist earlier this week when she won gold in the 10 metre air rifle final.

Speaking about his feat, he said, "I'm very excited that I became the Commonwealth champion. I am the youngest athlete from India to win Commonwealth gold at 15."

On his next competition and plans to celebrate, he added: "Next are the World Championships (in South Korea) and Asian Games (Indonesia). I will celebrate with my coach."

In the Qualifications, Anish scored 580 to finish on top while Neeraj was second best with 579.

Anish scored 286 in stage 1 and 294 in Stage 2 qualifying, while Neeraj had 291 in Stage 1 and 288 in Stage 2.