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ISSF World Cup: Jitu becomes India's most successful, first-timers impress

PTI

The shooting World Cup in New Delhi was the first to be held in the country since 2003. A total of 452 athletes from 50 countries participated in what was the first major shooting event since the Rio Olympics. India bagged a rich medal haul and also saw the emergence of new talent. Here are the top takeaways from the tournament:

Jitu Rai top of the tree

Jitu Rai surpassed Ronjan Sodhi as India's most successful shooter in ISSF World Cup history. Rai -- who won gold in the 50m air pistol along with bronze in the 10m air pistol -- now has eight World Cup medals, a World Cup Final silver and a World Championship silver. He has three golds, three silvers and two bronzes overall. Sodhi has two golds, one silver and one bronze. While all of Sodhi's medals have come in the double trap, Rai has won five medals in the 50m air pistol and three in the 10m air pistol. Manavjit Singh Sandhu and Gagan Narang have won six medals each in the World Cup.

India's best-ever medal haul

India won five medals to finish fifth in the standings behind China, Italy, Australia and Japan. Besides Rai's medals, Pooja Ghatkar won bronze in the 10m air rifle, Ankur Mittal got silver in the double trap and Amanpreet Singh won silver in the 50m air pistol. India's previous best at a single edition of the World Cup was the three medals won on three different occasions: Sydney 2010, Fort Benning 2011, Maribor 2014.

First-time finalists impress

Three of the four Indian medallists -- Ghatkar, Mittal and Amanpreet -- were appearing in their first World Cup final. Deepak Kumar, who was making his World Cup debut, finished fifth in the men's 10m air rifle. Another debutant, Neeraj Kumar, made the final round in the 25m rapid fire pistol event.

Mittal breaks six-year double trap itch

India won a double trap World Cup medal after six years. Sodhi had won gold in the event at the Al Ain World Cup in 2011. Mittal is the third Indian after Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and Sodhi to win a double trap World Cup medal. It is one of three events that have been scrapped for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.