Bashir Aims for Improved Performace at the Next Olympics

muzzamil mehboobWeb Editor

10th Aug, 2021. 12:27 pm
Bashir Aims for Improved Performace at the Next Olympics

Ghulam Mustafa Bashir has been training even after returning from Tokyo Olympics and trying to figure out why he was not able to perform at the Olympics.

Compared to athletes in other disciplines, Bashir has the luxury of better training facilities and coaching at the Pakistan Navy shooting range. Ahead of Olympics, he was firing 300 rounds per day.

During the first round of the 25 meters rapid pistol fire, he stood at 6th position. But after the second round, he falls below 10th position with an average score of 579.

However, it was an improvement by eight places from his performance at the 2016 Rio Olympics. Bashir believes that his performance will keep on improving to go for the medal for Pakistan at the Paris Olympics in 2024.

“I have to keep going and improving so I can do better in qualifying and at the next Olympics,” Bashir told media at the end of a news conference arranged by Navy upon his return from Tokyo.

Bashir scored well in the first two phases of both qualifying rounds, where he had to fire two five-shot series in eight and six seconds, respectively. He missed out on the medal round in the third phase of the final round, where two five-shot series had to be fired in four seconds.

“It’s not about technique … there are a lot of other factors,” he said when asked whether his approach to the third segment wasn’t up to the mark.

“At the Olympics, unlike when you’re at the training range, there is the added pressure of competition. Here [at the range], I’m able to get maximum scores but it’s different there.

“Also, the conditions are different,” he added. “Here, we have an outdoor range while shooting at the Olympics is held indoors with lighting and everything.”

But Bashir, now ranked 14th in the world in the air pistol, isn’t one to make excuses. “Of course I can do better than this,” he said. “There is always room for improvement.”

He added that the practice for the Olympics was disrupted due to COVID-19.

“We were mentally prepared going to Tokyo that these were a Games like never before,” said Bashir, who was Pakistan’s flag-bearer at the Rio Olympics opening ceremony.

“The restrictions that were in place didn’t really matter since I stuck to my training routine. And that’s what I will continue to keep doing till the next Games.”

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