United Arab Emirates celebrated a victory from one of its own on the last day of the World Shooting Para Sport World Cup in Al Ain, as Abdulla Sultan Alaryani secured gold in the R7 (men’s 50m rifle 3 positions SH1).
The six-day competition wrapped up on Tuesday (27 March), with R7 and R5 (mixed 10m air rifle prone SH2) events.
For Alaryani, his win was an upgrade from Monday’s bronze in the R6 (mixed 50m rifle prone SH1). Reigning Paralympic silver medallist in R7 and R6, Alaryani showed he is a strong medal contender for both events ahead of the 2018 World Shooting Para Sport Championships that are almost a month away in Cheongju, South Korea.
The 47-year-old opened the elimination stage with a strong lead and comfortably shot his way to gold with a score of 457.9. It was his fourth straight R7 World Cup victory.
China’s Chao Dong (450.2) pulled away from the rest of the field early to claim his second silver in Al Ain. South Korea’s Youngjip Shim (440.0) rounded off the podium.
The R5 was a bitter battle to the last shot, and Slovenia’s Francek Gorazd Tirsek (254.3) found a way to secure the top prize.
He went back-and-forth with Ukraine’s Rio 2016 champion Vasyl Kovalchuk (253.3) and Great Britain’s Ryan Cockbill (232.1). But in the last two rounds, Tirsek held his nerves to shoot no less than 10.6 and spoil Kovalchuk’s attempt at a third medal, second gold.
Tirsek finished the week with two medals, including R4 (mixed 10m air rifle standing SH2) silver. Cockbill’s bronze was his second in the competition.
The World Cup in Al Ain was the first competition in 2018. Complete results can be found on World Shooting Para Sport's website.
Next up is the World Shooting Para Sport Grand Prix in Szczecin, Poland, from 11-14 April. It will be the last competition before the 2018 World Championships, held 4-11 May.