New Delhi: The World Cups of shooting may not carry Olympic qualification status in the near future as the sport’s global governing body contemplates restricting the quota places to only the world championships and continental tournaments.
The International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) has been planning to introduce changes to its Olympic qualification criteria for a while now and the system used for the recently-concluded Tokyo Games is unlikely to be there for the 2024 Paris edition.
This was confirmed to PTI by an insider in the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI), which has in its possession the ISSF documents related to the proposed changes in the qualification criteria for the multi-sporting showpiece.
“The ISSF has sent its material to the federations regarding the changes. So, once the proposal is approved, the world cups will not carry quota places, which will be there in only the world championships and the continental tournaments,” he said on the condition of anonymity.
In the wake of the Indian shooters’ disappointing outing at the Tokyo Olympics despite entering the Games with a few medal contenders, a school of thought has emerged that they took part in too many ISSF world cups, thereby exposing themselves to the participants from other nations ahead of their biggest challenge.
“It was felt by many that the Indian shooters competed in too many world cups. Now if there is a change, they can choose which world cup to participate in and which to skip. That way they will not end up participating in every tournament,” the source said.
Also the existing MQS (Minimum Qualification Score) could be replaced by MOQS (Minimum Olympic Qualification Score), and if NRAI sources are to believed, a shooter will need to reach a minimum score set by the ISSF to go to the Olympics.
“Though it is comparatively tougher to get quotas in the world championships in which the entries are the highest, there will also be the continental events like the Asian Shooting Championships which will offer more quota places than before.
“Even the world championships will probably carry more quota places than before with the world cups shorn of qualifying status.”
Around 360 shooters from as many as 100 countries participated across 15 events at the Tokyo Olympics shooting competition.
India’s 15-strong squad failed to win a single medal, returning empty-handed from the Games for the second straight time, five years after the disaster in Rio 2016.
The MQS is a minimum score that a shooter “must have recorded at least once in the set timeframe, in order to become eligible” to take part in the Olympic Games or in the Youth Olympic Games.
The Minimum Qualification Scores for each shooting event are designated by the ISSF.
The qualification system for shooting is based on quota places.
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