Khalil Muhammad Akhtar

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1st Pakistani shooter to ‘win’ a quota place for an Olympic

Tushar Dutt, Sep 3, 2019: The Times of India

Khalil Muhammad Akhtar created history for Pakistan as he became first shooter from his country to ‘win’ a quota place for an Olympic Games on Saturday. With the 25m rapid fire quota, Akhtar, 35, has become eligible to participate in the Tokyo Games. Akhtar is one of the two shooters whose visa was denied by India ahead of the ISSF World Cup in February. Akhtar finally clinched a ticket to Tokyo in Rio de Janeiro World Cup.

Akhtar is employed with the Pakistani army. Though he has qualified for the Tokyo Games but reaching there won’t be easy. Pakistan’s shooting body’s executive vice president Javaid Lodhi, “We don’t have funds to get a good coach. Also, it will be an expensive affair to send him for the Tokyo Games. Hope the Pakistan government will support him,” Lodhi told TOI.

Prior to Akhtar’s quota win, 13 Pakistani shooters have represented their country at the Olympics, but not on pure merit.

Akhtar entered the 6-man final of 25m rapid fire at the World Cup in Rio de Janeiro and finished last in the medal round. However, since the other five finalists had already won quota for their countries, Akhtar got one of the two quota places.

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