Field Anjum in 3-Positions, says her coach

Field Anjum in 3-Positions, says her coach

Anjum Moudgil

Former international Deepali Deshpande, who is the personal coach of Anjum Moudgil, is planning to write to the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) to include the rifle shooter in women’s 50m 3-positions team in the coming competitions.

Anjum, who is the country’s No 1 women’s 50m rifle 3 positions shooter, won the Olympic quota place in the 10m air rifle with a silver in the 2018 Changwon World Championships. However, it put the 24-year-old out of the race of winning quota places in any other event. The NRAI, in a bid to give other shooters a chance, kept her in Minimum Qualification Score (MQS) for the 3P event in the season-opening World Cup hosted by India.

Deepali, however, felt this approach could hamper Anjum's medal chances in the Tokyo Games.

“In 50m 3P, Anjum is absolutely set now. She knows it like it is in her system. She was our best chance to get Olympic quota in 3P. But she got it in 10m air rifle. In air rifle we are so strong that even a 7th rank shooter can get quota for us and we got both the quotas, but in 3P it will be tough to get both the quotas,” said Deepali, who is also national junior rifle coach.

“The only one we can hope and can get a quota for us in 3P is N Gayathri. No one else is even near. So why put out our best prospect for an Olympic medal in a disadvantage. If you won’t let her compete the whole year and ask her six months before the Olympics to prepare for a medal, that is not fair."

Deepali, who participated in the 2004 Olympics, said the high level of competition in the pre-Olympic year would benefit Anjum.

“I spoke to foreign coach Oleg (Mikhailov) and we will be writing to NRAI about it. You will learn how to shoot in a competition when you shoot in a competition. In MQS, whatever she shoots, even a world record will not be counted. I sat behind her here and I didn’t feel the excitement of a competition,” Deepali said.

"Because of quotas, all these competitions are fought viciously. The level of competition when she competes will be different. Next year there are no quotas in competitions and everyone will be treating those competitions as practice matches. All these things matter.”


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