Asian Games: Daughter of a cop, shooter Malaika Goel aims for more glory
A 16-year-old policeman's daughter from northern India hopes to continue shocking the sport of shooting as she targets an Asian Games medal and then takes aim at the Olympics
New Delhi: A 16-year-old policeman's daughter from northern India hopes to continue shocking the sport of shooting as she targets an Asian Games medal and then takes aim at the Olympics.
Sixteen-year-old Malaika Goel
Fresh-faced Malaika Goel has been a passionate shooter since the age of 10, when she saw a neighbour practising, and has since been firing at targets set up at home by her father.
Her dedication paid off when she won 10m air pistol silver at this year's Commonwealth Games, upstaging the favourite, her compatriot Heena Sidhu.
Now Goel, whose idol is India's former Olympic champion Abhinav Bindra, will be the one in the spotlight when she steps on to the Asian Games shooting range in Incheon.
"I have so much to learn and improve," she said. "There is a long way to go to establish myself. And with the Chinese and Koreans around, the competition in Incheon will be much tougher.
"But then no one expected me to win a medal at Glasgow either. It all depends on some luck and how you shoot on that particular day. It does not matter if you are 16 or 60."
Recent months have been heady for Goel, one of the youngest competitors at Incheon, who was unknown outside the shooting world when she was selected for the CWG.
Participating in her first major competition, she caused a stir merely by reaching the final — and then finished second, behind Singapore's Shun Xie Teo.