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Top 18 Indian Shooters of all time

Image Source: Indian Express
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The Indian shooting scene as of late has garnered ample attraction. While Indian shooters’ senior squad will take its biggest ever contingent to the Olympics, it was India’s Junior Shooting team who made headlines in the ongoing ISSF World Cup 2019 with their spectacular performance. Here’s a list of 18 best Indian shooters.

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List of famous Indian shooters

S.N Indian Shooters
1 Abhinav Bindra
2 Manu Bhaker
3 Gayathri Nithyanadam
4 Yashaswini Singh Deswal
5 Elavenil Valarivan
6 Rituraj Singh
7 Jaspal Rana
8 Saurabh Chaudhary
9 Rahi Sarnobat
10 Anisa Sayyed
11 Heena Sidhu
12 Gagan Narang
13 Apurvi Chandela
14 Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore
15 Shreyasi Singh
16 Anjali Bhagwat
17 Ronjan Sodhi
18 Jitu Rai

Indian shooters: Abhinav Bindra

The best shooter in India & most successful one needs no introduction. Abhinav Bindra, the Olympic Gold medalist has redefined shooting in India. His illustrious career is a result of undying passion and commitment. Not many know that he started shooting reluctantly when he was in school. The reluctance turned into a dream very soon!

At a very young age, Abhinav made his Commonwealth and Olympic debut. However, his first breakthrough came in 2001. He won a bronze medal at the Munich Cup. In the next few years, he achieved one milestone after another.

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In 2002, he won his first CWG medal and in 2006 he conquered the world by winning the World Championship. The biggest moment of Abhinav’s career came in 2008. He brought home the country’s first individual Olympic gold!

After winning more than 180 international medals, he made the country proud for 22 years. Abhinav retired from a professional shooting in 2016. He decided to pass on the baton to youngsters. Now, he is enjoying another chapter of his life by becoming an entrepreneur and guide.

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Indian shooters: Manu Bhaker

Manu Bhaker picked shooting only a few years ago and what success graph she has observed! She is only 16 right now and has officially made a world record by scoring 242.5 points in the Women’s Junior 10m Air Pistol Finals.

Manu came into the limelight when she contended at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in the 10m Air Pistol class and won the gold medal. She won it with an untouched and an all-time game record in both the Qualifications (388) and the Finals(240.9). The event included participation from the top sporting nations like Australia, England, Canada, among others.

Manu had won her first senior title at the World Cup held at Guadalajara, Mexico in March 2018, and proved her debut to the bigger and tougher stage.

According to her mentor Jaspal Rana, Manu is extremely focused, disciplined, and rational that makes her a solid contender in the World Cup 2019 finals, where coping weight is as essential as the skill. Mas of getting felicitated by our Prime Minister Mr.Narender Modi.

READ | India at Olympics | Top 15 Indian Olympic Winners 

Indian shooters: Gayathri Nithyanadam

Image Source: Twitter

Without any uncertainty, one of the most noteworthy Indian junior shooters is Gaayathri Nithyanadam. The 19-year-old secured the bronze medal in the 50m Rifle 3 shooting event and was a part of the trio that won the gold in the group event too.

Gayathri has surely made considerable progress after she finished a disappointing 18th at the Junior World Championships in 2018.  The young shooter hopes to put forward her best performances, thus bringing her stakes up in the circuit.

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Indian shooters: Yashaswini Singh Deswal

Yashaswini Singh Deswal. Credits: The Indian Express

If Nithyanadam is a brilliant spot for India in the rifle category, Yashaswini Singh Deswal has proved her ability in the pistol event. Yashaswini created the storm by clinching a gold medal at the Women’s 10m Air Pistol event at the Junior World Cup.

Yashaswini was also a part of the team that won the silver in the 10m Air Pistol group event, finishing second behind Germany.

Earlier, Deswal had given the shooting fraternity a look into her potential at the 2014 Asian Shooting Championships where she had won the silver in the Air Pistol category and improved her notoriety further at the World Cup.

Later, the Panchkula-based shooter additionally got a chance to train alongside the likes of Abhinav Bindra in Delhi. This shooter has all the potential to show her potential at the upcoming national and international shooting events.

READ | The Significance of Olympic Torch and Olympic Flame

Indian shooters: Elavenil Valarivan

Elavenil Valarivan. Credits: Fisto Sports

In March 2018, the 18-year-old Elavenil Valarivan made history. Contending in her second Junior World Cup in Sydney, the Tamil Nadu-born shooter previously set a world record in the qualification round and proceeded to win gold in the 10m air rifle event.

Elavenil also broke the world record and won a gold in Sydney at ISSF Junior World Cup in 2018.  Presently, the young shooter is participating at her first Senior Shooting World Cup competition in New Delhi.

“The year 2018 was extremely special for me. I was eagerly waiting that the 2019 season will start as it is an exceptionally huge year in light of the upcoming Olympics,” she said on the sidelines of her first-ever senior ISSF World Cup event.

Valarivan was always into sports, however, wasn’t even aware of shooting till she was 12. Her dad, who was pursuing his M.Sc around then, taught chemistry in a school. The daughter of one of her dad’s students showed her how to deal with a rifle.

In the wake of turning proficient, Valarivan needed to venture out to a school that included a shooting range. She moved to Sanand, 30 km away from her home in the Maninagar area of Ahmedabad in Gujarat. Adjusting studies and shooting wasn’t simple. But Elavenil conquered it all.

Indian shooters: Rituraj Singh

Rituraj Singh

Another emerging Indian shooter is Rituraj Singh, who was a part of the team that won gold in the 25m Standard Pistol category by defeating France.

The Assam-born shooter is a big fan of Jitu Rai, who helped him comprehend and get rid of the fear from his mind. Jitu has won 5 World Cup medals in his career span and Rituraj assures that he would want to go past that record.

India’s Prime Minister too is in complete awe of the potential and the laurels, our young shooters have brought for the country. His tweet read as follows.

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Indian shooters: Apurvi Chandela

Apurvi Chandela was born and brought up in Jaipur. Her father, Kuldeep Singh Chandela, is a hotelier and her mother, Bindu Rathore, is a homemaker. Apurvi has done her graduation from Jesus and Mary College, Delhi University. She has a degree in Sociology with honors.

Apurvi has balanced her sporting career and education really well. She always wanted to pursue a career related to sports, if not be a sportsperson. Her agenda was to be a sports journalist. However, life had bigger plans for her.

Apurvi Chandela was born and brought up in Jaipur. Her father, Kuldeep Singh Chandela, is a hotelier and her mother, Bindu Rathore, is a homemaker. Apurvi has done her graduation from Jesus and Mary College, Delhi University. She has a degree in Sociology with honors.

Apurvi has balanced her sporting career and education really well. She always wanted to pursue a career related to sports, if not be a sportsperson. Her agenda was to be a sports journalist. However, life had bigger plans for her.

Indian shooters: Rahi Sarnobat

Rahi Sarnobat, one of the finest Indian Shooting player, was born and brought up in Kolhapur, Rahi Sarnobat moved to Pune to train in 25-meter pistol shooting.

After making a mark in the Youth Games and Commonwealth Games, she truly arrived on the international scene in 2013. She became the first Indian pistol shooter to win the gold medal in the World Cup.

Unfortunately, her spectacular career took a brief pause due to a freak accident. She fractured her elbow and spent almost two years recuperating.

After a test of her perseverance and patience, she finally made it through the dark period. With the newfound support and guidance of Munkhbayar Dorjsuren, she made her comeback.

What a comeback it was! Rahi combined her rich experience and Dorjsuren’s world-class training and went to win the gold at the 25-meter pistol event in the Jakarta Palembang Asian Games!

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Best shooter in india: Saurabh Chaudhary

His calm attitude, superior focus, and dedication belie his age. Saurabh Chaudhary is not an ordinary soul, he is a champion in the making. Studying in class 11th, Saurabh is already an Asiad gold medallist. He undoubtedly one of the best shooter in India of the current era.

Coming from a humble farming family to capturing the attention of the entire nation, Saurabh has come a long way. But, the journey has just begun. He has a really long way to go and many medals to win.

He comes from a farming family based in Kalina village. His father, Jagmohan Singh, is a farmer and his mother, Brajesh Devi, is a homemaker. He has two elder siblings- one brother, Nitin, and one sister, Sakshi.

Saurabh’s family has always been his biggest support, even when he chose the path less taken. No wonder then that he has stayed connected to his roots and is proud to call himself a farmer.

Heena Sidhu

Heena Sidhu (Credits Telegraph)

Gunpowder probably runs through Heena’s bloodstreams, considering Sidhu’s household’s deep affiliation with guns. While her father was a National Sports Shooter, her uncle was a gunsmith. She grew up in an environment that would always have some guns around, especially so since she lived in a joint. Naturally, the rich gun culture rubbed off.

Heena in a similar way as her brother who also went on to be a professional Indian shooter. What started off as a casual hobby soon became a blazing passion.

In an interview recently, Sidhu explained how, initially, she just wanted to enjoy the sport rather than compete at the Olympics one day.

Sidhu first started to shoot with a rifle, one of the biggest and most sophisticated guns around. However, considering that the gun needed such complex contraptions as eyepiece, gas cylinders, heavy jackets, stiff trousers, heavy shoes, stands, and many more. As a result, Sidhu chose to go with a simpler and lesser expensive gun, the humble pistol, for a year. She stuck with the pistol ever after.

Gagan Narang

In 2003, Narang won the gold medal at the Afro Asian Games in Hyderabad. He won the award in the men’s 10m air rifle competition. This golden spree continued with the air rifle gold medal at the 2006 World Cup.

The 2006 Commonwealth was very special for Narang with a staggering tally of four gold medals. He also won the top honors at the 2008 World cup in China. Subsequently, he qualified for the 2008 ISSF World Cup Final.

The next edition of the Commonwealth Games, the 2010 New Delhi Games, was again truly golden for Narang. Again, he won four gold medals. He also shot a perfect score of 600 in the 10 m air rifles singles event and set a new record.

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Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore

There are people who excel in one field, but rarely do we come across someone who excels at everything he does! Perhaps it is his belief that people should have the freedom to choose their own field and excel in their own way that has made him so multi-talented. Wondering whom we are talking about? We are talking about none other than, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore! The Olympic shooting medalist is now proactively changing Indian sports as a minister. His journey began in a royal family from Jaisalmer, Rajasthan, and has had numerous milestones. Whether it was representing the country at international shooting competitions or fighting militants in Kashmir; he has done it all!

Shreyasi Singh

Image Source: India Today

Shreyasi Singh is an international-level trap shooter who made the country proud by winning the gold medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. The victory brought her into the spotlight, but there are myriad aspects of her life that aren’t well-known. She has participated in events such as single trap, double trap, TR75, TR125W, and DT120, and has had an interesting journey in the last few years.


We also wish our young Indian shooting contingent all the very best for future events. Go & shine on!

For the latest content on Indian sports, stay tuned with KreedOn.

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A bibliophile and a polygot, Sanchita has been a writer for more than six months, having touched almost all genres. She has an Economics (Hons) degree and is currently pursuing CFA (US), FRM (US) and Actuarial Science. Even though her profession revolves around the field of finance, Sanchita is an ardent lover of sports and loves to live her dream of being creative with words in the field of sports. She is a creative, energetic, ambitious person who loves learning new things, both for career advancement and personal growth.

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