India will be expecting to secure two to four Olympics quotas out of the 16 available at the ISSF World Cup beginning in New Delhi on February 20, national shooting federation chief Raninder Singh said on Friday.
“Realistically, I expect anything between two to four quotas. But in shooting, it is all about how you do on that particular day. So, we can get more also,” said NRAI chief Singh. India will be hosting the tournament for the third time but it will be the first time ever Olympic quota places will be up for grabs in a shooting event held in the country, claimed Singh.
Hosts India will be fielding a 34-member squad, including 11 in the non-competition Minimum Qualification Score (MQS) category. In all, 495 athletes from 58 nations will feature in the event.
Only the two mixed team events out of the 10 will have no quotas on offer. “The event will be shown live on television. And let me tell you, we have not sought any financial support from the government to conduct the event. We are doing it on our own and ISSF is only paying for the TV production,” said Singh.
Pakistan shooters are also expected to get visas in time for the competition, said Singh. Pistol coach and former shooter Jaspal Rana, who works with youngsters like Manu Bhaker, has been called up to join the camp for the World Cup after his name was missing from the support staff list originally.
“I was unavailable for a few days and that is why I could not fix this issue earlier. There is no such term as senior or junior coach. If the shooters want to work with a particular coach, we have no issues,” added Singh.
India has already bagged its maximum share of two country quotas in the women’s 10m rifle competition through Anjum Moudgil and Apurvi Chandela, who sealed the spots in the ISSF World Championship in Changwon last year. That leaves India to fight for 14 places in seven events.