Veronika Vadovicova snatches dramatic win in Croatia

Slovakia’s Paralympic champion wins R6 in final round at Osijek World Cup 27 Sep 2017
a group of three wheelchair athletes on the podium

Vadovicova (C) pulled off a stunning last round win to take gold ahead of Matt Skelhon (L)

ⒸDavor Kruselj

Veronika Vadovicova completed a stunning final round win, while Sareh Javanmardi rebounded from an upset as the third World Shooting Para Sport World Cup of the year finished on Tuesday (26 September) in Osijek, Croatia.

Multi-Paralympic champion Vadovicova is no stranger to late World Cup wins and in Osijek she pulled off another great comeback. The Slovakian trailed Great Britain’s Matt Skelhon throughout much of the R6 (mixed 50m rifle prone SH1) elimination stage, entering the final round down 229.0 to 227.8. But once again, Vadovicova triumphed under pressure to shoot 10.2 and 10.4 for a winning score of 248.4. It was her second victory in Osijek and a strong note to finish on in her first competition since Rio 2016 last September. Skelhon (248.0) took silver, and France’s Cedric Fevre (225.2) took the bronze.

Iranian Paralympic champion Javanmardi (228.2) was also making her season debut and showed complete control in the P4 (mixed 50m pistol SH1). She distanced herself from Serbia’s Zivko Papaz (219.7) as the elimination stage went on before comfortably winning gold. The victory made up for the surprising silver on Tuesday in the P2 (women’s 10m air pistol SH1), in which she also holds the Paralympic title. Serbia’s Rastko Jokic (199.7) completed the podium.

After two third-place finishes in Osijek, Serbia’s Dragan Ristic finally secured gold in an entertaining final round with Slovenia’s Francek Gorazd Tirsek. Ristic (255.5) was marginally more accurate than Tirsek (254.1), shooting 10.7 and 10.9, compared to his opponent’s 10.9 and 10.5. South Korea’s Jiseok Lee (232.1) took home the bronze medal.

Complete results from the Osijek World Cup can be found here.

The World Cup series will wrap up in Bangkok, Thailand, from 8-11 November, when athletes can continue earning Minimum Qualification Standard places ahead of the 2018 World Championships in Cheongju, South Korea.