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Shooting

How shooter Tejaswini Sawant's 20-year journey took the big leap in Tokyo Olympics

Tejaswini Sawant is going to compete at her maiden Olympics in Tokyo Olympics 2021. Sawant competes in the 50m rifle, 3 positions event.

Indian Rifle Shooter Tejaswini Sawant
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Tejaswini Sawant (Source: DNA News)

By

Shreya Verma

Updated: 2021-07-13T17:10:18+05:30

The incredible blend of young and experienced Indian shooters is going to compete in the Tokyo Olympics 2021. The diversity in the team is proof of the ground-level improvement in the Indian shooting team.

40-year-old Tejaswini Sawant is going to compete in her first maiden Olympic Games in Tokyo. Sawant will represent India in the 50m rifle, 3 positions event alongside Anjum Moudgil.

Tejaswini Sawant's shooting journey: 2001-2021

Sawant is the oldest women shooter in the Indian squad this year. But what is more notable is her perseverance.

Rifle shooter started shooting back in 2001, at the time of shooters like Anjali Bhagwat and Deepali Deshpande. Within a year, she started competing in championships under the guidance of her coach Jaisingh Kusale. Sawant hails from Kolhapur, Maharashtra.

First Indian female to clinch gold at the World Championships

Tejaswini Sawant World Champion 2010

During the ISSF World Championships 2010, Munich, Sawant created history by winning India's first gold in women's event at the world championship. In 2011, she was awarded the prestigious Arjuna award.

Tejaswini has a successful career, as she clinched a plethora of medals at Commonwealth Games and Asian Championships. However, even after her consistent performances, she missed out on Olympic berths by a whisker in 2008 and 2012.

There are other veteran shooters in the fray, but they have competed in Olympics before. Notably, Sawant qualifying for her first Olympics at Tokyo Olympics 2021 is inspiring. It portrays that age is just a number, and consistent hard work always pays off.

Tejaswini Sawant Arjuna Award 2011

Topped the MQS event at European Championship, Osijek 2021

Tejaswini Sawant has been training under Kuheli Gangulee. Sawant is the most experienced female shooter in the Indian contingent. At Osijek, she had a stellar run with 622.7 in the 10m air rifle MQS event and topped the charts.

Compared to other rifle women shooters, Sawant has been proficient for years now. Shooting being a mental sport, it's not often we see shooters performing consistently for years. It took Tejaswini a decade and a half to reach her dream of Olympic games.

Interestingly, she has inspired many young Indians to take up shooting, including another Tokyo-bound shooter Rahi Sarnobat. Tejaswini Sawant's appearance at her maiden Olympic Games in Tokyo is the perfect example of perseverance and hard work. This is an important message for all Indians that age is not a barrier to have dreams.

With years of experience and her hunger for the Olympic medal, Sawant can achieve the podium finish if she reaches her peak performance on match day.

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