Virginia Thrasher of the United States won a first gold medal in the women’s 10 meters rifle event at Rio 2016 Olympics with a score of 208.0. Du Li of China gets the silver medal with 207.0.
The rivalry between Thrasher and Du went down to the wire. But the American teenager held her nerve to clinch the women’s 10m air rifle event. The final result also decided the first gold medalist of the Rio 2016 Olympics.
The gold is the third won by the United States in women’s air rifle, the first since Nancy Napolski-Johnson took gold in 2000.
Thrasher is a NCAA champion at West Virginia competing in her first Olympics. She wasn’t the favorite coming in as Du won gold at the 2004 Athens Olympics. Andrea Arsovic of Serbia is ranked No. 1 in the world and failed to advance to the final.
In the qualification round earlier, China’s Du Li created a new Olympic record to finish on top of the standings with a score of 402.7 (104.5, 106, 104.8, 105.4). Barbara Engleder of Germany finished second, while Iran’s Elaheh Ahmadi, and Russia’s Daria Vdovina took the third and fourth spots respectively. USA’s Sarah Scherer and Virginia Thrasher took the fifth and the sixth spot, while Snjezana Pejcic of Croatia and defending champion Yi Siling finished eighth to make it to the finals.
On the other hand, India had a very disappointing performance at the shooting range. Both the Indian shooters failed to hit the high 10s throughout the qualification round and they finished outside the top-30 shooters. Apurvi Chandela finished 34th with a score of 411.7 (104.2, 102.7, 103.3, 101.4), while Ayonika Paul ended up at 47th with a score of 403 (102, 104.5, 102.5, 94).