Chinese markswoman, Swiss youngster split golds at Milan shooting World Cup

2009-05-25 08:40 BJT

MILAN, May 24 (Xinhua) -- Olympic champion Guo Wenjun marched to the top of the podium on her first attempt of the season at the Milan shooting World Cup here on Sunday while Swiss youngster Lukas Grunder shot down his first World Cup gold with a record win.

Guo, 24, the only reigning Olympic champion from China to be put into the national squad, appeared at a World Cup match for the first time of the year, and narrowly missed the world record of the women's 10-meter air pistol.

She collected 392 points in the 40-shot qualification round, just one point less than the world record set by Svetlana Smirnova in 1998.

"After shooting 296 points on the first thirty shots, I couldn't help thinking of the world record," said Guo, the defending champion here. "Then I fired two eight points in the last ten shots."

However, the score of 392 points was already her best achievements during the international career.

"In fact, I trained only a little after the Olympic Games, and was now in a bad shape, so the score of the first thirty shots really shocked me," said Guo.

In the 10-shot final round, she was back into her real condition, collecting 97.9 points, the lowest of her career, with only three shots in the 10-point circle.

"That was a shame, but that's how I am now. I am very sure that I wouldn't win without the four-point lead," she added.

Her compatriot Hu Jun, the gold medalist in Beijing World Cup, grabbed the silver with a total of 488.6 points.

Polish Miroslawa Sagun Lewandowska finished on the third position with 486.0 points, thanks to a best achievement of 101.0 points in the final round.

The men's 10m air pistol competition saw a new World Cup champion here as Grunder, the 19-year-old Swiss, cruised to win with outstanding performance.

Grunder, starting to compete in adult events almost from this year, equalled the junior world record of 588 points in the qualification round, with a safe advantage of five points on the other finalists.

In spite of lack of exprience, he did a fantastic job in the final round, firing the highest score of 103.1 points and claimed his first World Cup title with a total of 691.1 points, 8.9 points ahead of the runner-up Serhiy Kudriya.

Kudriya, the 26-year-old Ukraine shooter, secured also his first World Cup medal in the second appearance at World Cups.

Russia's Denis Koulakov, 29, coming into a World Cup final round for the first time, won the bronze medal with 680.6 points, followed by 18-year-old Chinese shooter Zhang Bin.

Editor: Zheng Limin | Source: Xinhua