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Three-time Olympic gold medallist Niccolo Campriani and India's Olympic gold medallist Abhinav Bindra have teamed up to train three refugees in order to help them qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Games. Considered as a big initiative to develop and nurture sporting talent among youngsters, and especially refugees, the 31-year-old Campriani is taking a different kind of aim this time. Bindra and Campriani’s careers ended on the same day in 2016, but in a highly contrasting fashion. Now the shooting greats have come to collaborate with each other on a different platform with the goal remaining not too far, as both prepare the three refugees as shooters for a shot at the Olympics. https://twitter.com/campriani/status/1154333160991330304 In a program started by the Italian who won the gold medal at the last Olympic Games, he is mentoring three shooters to reach the minimum qualifying score that will make them eligible for the Refugee Olympic Team, according to a report by The Indian Express.
Over the next one year, Campriani will mentor them to help them achieve a minimum qualifying score that will make them eligible for the Refugee Olympic Team, which made its debut at the Rio Games. The Italian legend is the head of the project, who claims to have nourished the idea to train refugees at the Rio Olympics, where he met a few athletes of the 10-member team. His initiative received support from the shooting fraternity as athletes sent in equipment while some federations invited them at national competitions and camps, added the report. Asked about whether he is exploring the possibility of coming to India for a few sessions, he said, “That’s the discussion I have had with Abhinav. It would make a lot of sense, considering the potential gold medalists you might have next year in Tokyo and Abhinav’s role in the project…so if there is a chance, we would love to." With the Olympics less than one year away, the duo who once shot their countries to glory, are now playing their parts to shoot others towards their dream.
“I could put together all the equipment I needed through the donations, but I also needed some cash flow for other expenses. When I was exploring different options, I looked into the Abhinav Bindra Foundation. And then after talking to Abhinav and knowing the work he is doing in India, he proposed his help. That was the crucial part of the project,” Campriani told The Indian Express.