Manish Narwal clinches India’s 3rd gold, Adana bags silver

Tokyo, Sep 04 (PTI):
Shooter Manish Narwal smashed the Paralympic record to clinch India’s third gold in the ongoing Tokyo Games, while compatriot Singhraj Adana bagged the silver to make it a sensational one-two finish for the country here on Saturday.
The gold and silver from the Faridabad duo took India’s medal tally to 15 — 3 gold, 7 silver and 5 bronze. The 19-year-old Narwal, who holds the world record in the category, shot a total of 218.2, a Paralympic record, to claim the yellow metal in P4 Mixed 50m Pistol SH1 event in his debut Games.
“I’m very happy,” said Narwal who hails from Ballabhgarh in Haryana.
Narwal had a keen interest in sports from childhood and grew up wanting to become a football player. Unfortunately, he could not fulfil his footballing dreams due to a congenital ailment in his right hand.
His wrestler father Dilbagh tried doing anything to make sure that his son’s deformity did not hold him back. In 2016, on the suggestion of a family friend, Dilbagh took Narwal to a nearby shooting range at Ballabhgarh run by coach Rakesh Thakur. That changed Narwal’s life and he instantly developed a keen interest in the sport and started doing practice regularly. But at that time he did not know about Paralympic Games and he was practising and competing with other athletes for fun. His talent was spotted by coach Jai Prakash Nautiyal and Narwal won an individual gold in P1 Air Pistol SH1 event in the 2017 Bangkok World Cup. Before that, he won gold medal in P1 and silver in P4 in 2018 Asian Para Games in Jakarta.
The 39-year-old Adana, who had won the bronze in the P1 men’s 10m air pistol SH1 event on Tuesday, added a silver to his kitty with an effort of 216.7 as India continued its medal rush in the sport. With his feat, Adana, who competes with polio-impaired lower limbs, joins the elite list of Indians who have won multiple medals in the same edition of the Games. “Every shot is very difficult. One shot is very important, so my coach every time says ‘Singhraj, Manish, only one shot, one shot fired’,” Adana said of the final shoot-off between he and Narwal. “The final was very difficult. I decided (when I was) in third position, Singhraj, good, please, stop, breathe, stop, OK. And one shot, only one shot, please. No other thought, my mind is slow. And go again.”
On the trilby hat he wore during the final, Adana said, “My hat is a gift from my wife, so my very lucky hat.”
Adana belongs to a humble family at Faridabad. His grandfather took part in the country’s freedom movement and served in the British Indian Army during the second world war. Adana’s father Prem Singh is a farmer and social worker. Adana participated in various social causes like education for the poor and rights of the disabled at a very young age. He took interest in shooting at the age of 35 while he was escorting his nephew to a shooting range. Instantly, he got impressed and took up the sport.

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