Gurnihal Singh Garcha, ISSF World Championship junior bronze medallist, Wednesday claimed the Khelo India Youth Games Under-21 skeet gold medal by raising his game in the second half of the final that left others gasping in awe. He closed in on the crown with a display that combined precision and calm. Having missed four birds in the first 30 shots, Garcha was trailing Rajasthan's Anantjeet Singh Naruka by a point. The puffs of wind and his rivals, who were eager to make a run for gold, did not seem to matter to him. The 19-year-old, son of a Ludhiana farmer who has installed a skeet range in his farm, moved into a zone and shot the next 30 points down relentlessly to romp home as the winner, a media release said.
Twenty-year-old Naruka caught the eye with a good display in the first half, which he ended with 14 shots in a row. But after stretching that to 19 successive shots, he missed two in quick succession and lost his rhythm. Abhay Singh Sekhon from Punjab grabbed the bronze. At the 50m range, Tamil Nadu's G Varshaa made a telling statement with her rifle to win the girls Under-21 3-position gold. The results (finals): Boys under-21 Skeet: 1. Gurnihal Singh Garcha (Punjab) 56; 2. Anantjeet Singh Naruka (Rajasthan) 52; 3. Abhay Singh Sekhon (Punjab) 41. Girls under-21 Skeet: 1. Darshana Rathore (Rajasthan) 49; 2. Simranpreet Kaur (Punjab) 44; 3. Pooja Vishwakarma (Madhya Pradesh) 37. Girls under-17 50m Rifle 3-positions: 1. G Varshaa (Tamil Nadu) 447.1 points; 2. Shirin Godara (Haryana) 443.3; 3. Ayushi Podder (West Bengal) 432.8. Mixed team 10m Air Pistol: 1. Haryana (Priya Raghav and Anmol Jain) 464.9 points; 2. Telangana (Esha Singh and Aga Mohammed Zainulabedin) 461.8; 3. Punjab (Arjun Singh Cheema and Pardeep Kaur Sidhu) 394.7.