Shooting: Singapore's Teh Xiu Hong and Co create World Cup history in Changwon

Teh Xiu Hong (left) and Teo Shun Xie took gold and bronze respectively at the ISSF World Cup women's 25m pistol medal match. PHOTO: TEAM SINGAPORE/FACEBOOK

Singaporean shooter Teh Xiu Hong was so on fire that she scored a hit 15 times in a row towards the end of the ISSF World Cup women’s 25m pistol medal match, to win gold with a round of five shots to spare on Saturday (July 16).

A hit is considered a shot value of 10.2 or higher.

In doing so, the 28-year-old also helped Singapore win their first gold medal in the pistol discipline of the World Cup series, as teammate Teo Shun Xie took bronze in the same event.

There were more reasons for the national shooters to cheer at the Changwon International Shooting Range on Sunday, as Teh teamed up with her younger sister Xiu Yi and Teo to beat Thailand’s Tanyaporn Prucksakorn, Pim-On Klaisuban and Chawisa Paduka 17-9 to claim another gold in the women’s 25m pistol team event.

The trio had already won a bronze in the women’s air pistol team event on Thursday after beating Japan’s Yukari Konishi, Mika Zaitsu and Satoko Yamada 16-10 in the play-offs.
Xiu Yi, 26, said: “I feel proud of the team as we are able to strive to do our best despite being nervous.

“I’m also thankful to have this opportunity to have this experience as a team, and it feels rewarding to be able to achieve the gold medal with my sister.”

In the individual event, Xiu Hong and Teo had made it to the last eight as the first and seventh qualifiers respectively out of 28 athletes.

They were in separate ranking matches, where Xiu Hong recorded 14 hits out of 20 shots to edge Austria’s Sylvia Steiner out of the medal match by one hit. Meanwhile, Teo topped her ranking match with 15 hits.

In the four-woman medal match, the shooter with the lowest score after four rounds is knocked out, following which there will be further eliminations after two rounds until the champion is determined.

India’s Manu Bhaker was the first to fall after recording just nine hits in the first 20 shots. Xiu Hong led after six rounds with 23 hits but Frenchwoman Mathilde Lamolle and Teo were tied at 19 hits and required a shootout to decide who would progress. They drew 3-3 in the first shootout round, before Lamolle won 4-3.

Teo credited a week-long training stint with the South Korean team for the good results.

The 33-year-old thanked the hosts and the Singapore Sport Institute for the sports trainer, psychologist and physiologist support. She said: “I also feel the team have grown stronger mentally with all the team matches we had at the other World Cup legs.”

Meanwhile, Xiu Hong was just too accurate and another perfect round meant that she led 28-21 and had an unassailable lead going into the final round.

She said: “I’m happy to win following years of hard work.

“I didn’t feel any pressure being the top qualifier as all the shooters are just as good and we start from zero during the finals. I didn’t even realise I shot a few five-hits because I was very focused on my shooting processes.”

Singapore Shooting Association president Michael Vaz hailed the shooters’ achievements despite not having a finals range and a similar competitive environment in which to train at home.

Congratulating the team, he also praised the champion, noted her growth and said: “In 2018, I watched Xiu Hong enter the finals in the World Cup in Changwon, but the fear of shooting in a finals range terrified her. The lack of training in finals events saw her eliminated in the first round.

“Much has changed. In January 2022, I watched her struggle during the ISSF Jakarta GP to win a bronze. And Xiu Hong is now a World Cup champion, while Shun Xie also fought her way to a bronze medal, both of which are truly commendable achievements.”

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