Rahi — a class act

Rahi Sarnobat, when competing in the final, can find the bull’s eye more often than not.

In becoming the first Indian woman shooter ever to win the Asian Games gold, the 27-year-old Rahi revealed her ability to hit 10.2 or better repeatedly.


It has been a topsy-turvy career for the soft-spoken girl from Kolhapur, who had qualified for the 2012 London Olympics in dramatic style.

In the old format, when the qualifying score counted in the final, a seventh-placed Rahi rose brilliantly to bag the bronze with a 207.7 from 20 shots in the final of the Fort Benning World Cup in 2011.

It was an average of almost 10.4 which fetched her one of the two Olympic quota places then.

Catching the eye

After her individual silver and pairs gold with Anisa Sayyed in the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, it was clear that there was a young champion waiting to take wings. Rahi finished 19th in London, but won the World Cup gold in Changwon next year.

She went on to bag the individual gold in the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in 2014.

However, an injury to the shooting arm, and later the death of her coach Anatolii Piddubnyi, proved to be speed-breakers.

Working her way back

She did not make it to the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games squad, but worked her way back with the guidance of coach Ronak Pandit to book a spot for the Asian Games and World Championships which offer the first set of Olympic quota places for Tokyo.

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