India’s only Olympic individual gold medalist Abhinav Bindra missed the podium finish in Rio Olympics’ 10m Air Pistol event by just 0.5 points on the third day of the Games in the Brazilian capital on Monday.
Even after a splendid performance, Bindra could not make it to the top three following a tie breaker and was placed fourth to sign off empty-handed. With Bindra, the country of billions is still without a medal with dreams fading away with each passing day.
The entire nation were hooked to their television sets hoping the golden man of Beijing Olympics 2008 would come up with India’s first medal in the quadrennial showpiece.
The celebrated Indian marksman had decent start with some 10-pointers. Placed fifth, Bindra surged ahead with each passing round. After the first series, some good shots landed Bindra on the fifth spot with 29.9 points.
Shooter went down two spots in the next with 60.1 points and the nation skipped a beat as eliminations began. But after his seventh shot when he moved up to the fifth position, there was no stopping Bindra.
After the eighth shot and first elimination, Bindra jumped to fourth with 81.2 points. Everyone had their fingers crossed. To add to the hopes of the nation, Bindra moved to third position with a total of 102.7 points.
But his best shot in the event was the 11th one when a 10.7 pointer, Bindra moved to second position. A slight lapse in concentration moved Bindra to third position again. After the 16th shot, it was a moment of extreme pressure as Bindra had a tie with Ukraine’s Serhiy Kulish on 163.8 points.
And the tie breaker shot, where Bindra shot a 10-pointer, Kulish shot a 10.5 pointer thus eliminating Bindra from the event.
It was a moment of disappointment for the nation, but Indians still alive in the competition can take inspiration from the fight that the five-time Olympian gave in the 10m Air Pistol event.
The event was eventually won by Niccoló Campriani of Italy with 206.1 points followed by Serhiy Kulish of Ukraine with 204. 6 points and Vladimir Maslennikov of Russia with 184.2 points.
This was Bindra’s last shy at the Olympics. With him not participating in 2020 Tokyo Olympics, his hopes of creating history was dashed once and for all.