Chain shoots his way to 3rd gold
Rio Olympics bound Chain Singh emerged as the star marksman of the 12th South Asian Games as he picked up his third individual gold of the competition by winning the men's 50m rifles 3 positions as India yet again reigned supreme at the range here on Sunday.
There were only two gold medals on offer at the shooting range and the Indians picked up both to continue their sweep in the Games. India also easily took the gold in the team event of men's 50m rifle 3 positions.
The 26-year-old Chain shot a total of 453.3 to win the gold as he once again upstaged his senior team-mate and another Rio Games bound shooter Gagan Narang who took the silver with a total score of 450.3.
Sri Lanka's SMM Samarkoon got the bronze.
Chain had earlier won individual gold in 50m rifle prone and 10m air rifle. In fact, he won six gold as India won all the three team events he took part in.
Narang, who won a bronze in the London Olympics in 10m air rifle, took part in all the three rifle events but failed to pick up a gold.
He won a silver in 50m rifle prone and a bronze in 10m air rifle before settling for a silver in 50m rifle 3 positions.
Chain said the performance here at the SAG will boost his confidence in the run-up to Rio Olympics.
"I still need to improve upon the scores if I have to do well in the tough top level competitions ahead of the Olympics. But these three individual gold in the SAG will surely boost my confidence going ahead," Chain said after winning the gold.
Asked how he felt after winning three gold by beating Narang thrice, Chain said, "I did not anybody. I won three gold and this performance will give me confidence going ahead and in the preparation for the Olympics."
He said he had earlier beaten Narang but this was the first time he had beaten him thrice in a tournament.
Chain led the competition all through. He established a lead of 8.2 points over Narang by the end of kneeling position and maintained it at the end of prone round, though the gap was reduced to 5.8 points. He had a few poor shots in standing position, including a shot of 8.7, but his earlier lead was good enough to eventually clinch the gold.
The Indian trio of Chain, Narang and Surendra Singh Rathod bagged the gold in the team event with a total score of 3490, while Sri Lanka (3431) and Bangladesh (3398) took the silver and bronze respectively. After Sunday's clean sweep, India's total medal tally rose to 21 gold, 9 silver and 8 bronze. Bangladesh are at a distance second with 1 gold, 2 silver and 3 bronze.