Legend at 19: Lekhara becomes first Indian woman to win 2 Paralympic medals
Trailblazing shooter Avani Lekhara on Friday became the first Indian woman to win two Paralympic medals by claiming the 50m Rifle 3 Position SH1 bronze to add to an unprecedented gold she had secured earlier in the ongoing Games here.
In the fiercely contested finals, Lekhara totalled 445.9 to finish ahead of Ukraine's Iryna Shchetnik, who let slip her grip on the medal spot with a poor third shot of 9.9 in the elimination.
''It was a tough final but I'm happy to have made it into bronze. I could have done better than this. It's just what finals do to you,'' Lekhara said on her performance.
Lekhara had become the first Indian woman to win a Paralympic gold by claiming the top honours in the 10m air rifle standing SH1 event. That was also the first ever shooting medal that India had won in the Games.
''There are a lot of things on which I have to work, and I will definitely do better than this next time. There were a lot of distractions but I gave my 100 per cent to this,'' she said, referring to the celebrations that followed her gold medal.
The Jaipur-based shooter, who sustained spinal cord injuries in a car accident in 2012 rendering her immobile, had fired a world record equalling total of 249.6, which was also a new Paralympic record.
His silver came in shot put, while the two bronze medals were won in discus and javelin throw.
Athletes in SH1 Rifle have an impairment in their legs, for example amputations or paraplegia. Some athletes compete in a seated position, while others compete in a standing position.
She started shooting on the insistence of her father in 2015 at a Jaipur shooting range.
''She was angry at her condition and hardly had a desire to talk to anyone. For a change, I used to take her to JDA shooting range in Jagatpura, Jaipur where she developed interest in shooting,'' her father Praveen Lekhara had told PTI after the gold medal win in 10m air rifle competition.
In the men's event 50m Rifle 3P, Deepak failed to qualify for the finals after finishing 18th with a score of 1114.
With Lekhara's bronze, India's medal tally has risen to 12.
The country has won two gold, six silver and four bronze medals so far, an unprecedented and truly remarkable performance given that its combined haul for all previous Games stood at 12 before this.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)