NEW DELHI: Expectation can be a double-edged sword, but National Rifle Association of India (NRAI) president Raninder Singh reckons it could
bring the best out of his shooters in the Tokyo Olympics, with many of them adept at “thriving under pressure.”
At the upcoming Games in the Japanese capital, India will be represented by a record 15 shooters, all capable of winning a medal at sport’s biggest stage after an exceptional run of form in recent years.
“It (the Indian shooting team) is certainly up there among our top prospects for an Olympic medal,” Raninder told PTI in an interview.
The Olympics are scheduled to be held from July 23 to August 8, with the shooting events starting a day after the opening ceremony and covering the first 10 days of the extravaganza, which will be held without spectators owing to the pandemic.
Raninder is expected to be there in Tokyo, representing the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) as its vice-president and not as NRAI chief.
A week before the Games begin, he said, “I certainly am hopeful (of a good show by our shooters). In fact, more than hope, I am confident that they will do very well.
“It’s a wonderful strong mix of youth and experience. It is good that people have expectations. It means we have done something right,” Raninder, under whose stewardship the country’s shooters have grown by leaps and bounds, said.
Considering their terrific run in the last few years, starting with the Olympic cycle in 2018, the NRAI boss has reasons to feel confident about a decent medal haul from his shooters at the Games.
Before the coronavirus pandemic broke out, Indian shooters consistently dominated the sport, finishing top of the table in four ISSF World Cups in 2019 with teen sensations such as Saurabh Chaudhary and Manu Bhaker leading the way.