ISSF World Cup: India's performance 'not a marker' for Olympics but have talent, says NRAI president Raninder Singh
India have so far secured an unprecedented 15 Olympic quota places and is also leading the standings in the World Cup with 23 medals, including 11 gold.
New Delhi: Indian shooters are favoured to win medals in the upcoming Olympics but performance in the ongoing ISSF World Cup here is "not a marker" for success at the Tokyo Games, the head of the national federation Raninder Singh said on Friday.
The country has so far secured an unprecedented 15 Olympic quota places and is also leading the standings in the World Cup with 23 medals, including 11 gold.
"This World Cup is not a marker for the Olympics, teams have only sent those guys who are looking for ranking points, but we have the talent and the resources, and then it's between them (shooters) and God," Raninder told tournament broadcasters Sony Liv.
Raninder, who is the president of the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI), has played a part in the Indian shooters' meteoric rise in recent years, with the country finishing at the top in all four rifle/pistol World Cups in 2019.
The veteran administrator, who is also a vice-president in the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF), thanked the government and Sports Authority of India (SAI) for their help.
"It's been a long journey and the keyword is teamwork. We have the talent and have put together a very good team, it is a combination of things.
"Without the help of government and the SAI, it would not have been possible. We started bringing our own coaches like Suma (Shirur), Mansher (Singh) and Samresh (Jung) for them to give back to the sport."
Raninder also spoke about how getting an arms license has become easier these days.
"Getting an arms license is not an easy thing in this country but with the new notification, it has become a lot easier even for a 12-year-old if he is an athlete."
Now, import license is also issued without much hassle.
Asked about his next goal, the NRAI chief said development of coaches.
"Now that the base is there, we have to give quality direction to that base, developing quality coaches and help shooters from grassroots.
"We have the youngest Olympic team in the history of Olympics. There is a lot of competition and I want the seniors to be pushed by the youngsters all the time."
Ishikawa, who is president of an IT company, has attended every Summer Olympics since then, becoming famous as an unofficial 'International Olympic Cheerleader'. She relishes joining in with fans from everywhere to cheer for their athletes.
Earlier this month, the government in Canberra joined a growing number of countries halting the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine for younger people over fears it can cause serious blood clots.
Toshiro Nikai, the ruling Liberal Democratic Party's number two, said the Olympics must be cancelled "without hesitation" if the virus situation is too severe.