London: Army sharp shooter Vijay Kumar on Friday fought a nerve-wracking battle with five other top marksmen to clinch the silver medal in the men’s 25m Rapid Fire Pistol event at the Olympic Games in London.
Vijay Kumar hails from Harsour village in Hamirpur district in Himachal Pradesh.
Kumar beat back the challenge of world champion Alexei Klimov of Russia, Chinese duo of Ding Feng and Zhang Jian and German Christian Reitz in the 40-shot final to finish runner-up in a thrilling finale behind Cuba’s Leuris Pupo who shot his way to the gold with a world record equalling score of 34.
The silver was in his bag when Feng missed twice in the seventh round and Kumar replied with four.
Celebrations erupted in the state as Himachal Pradesh government announced a cash reward of Rs 1 crore for the army’s marksman Vijay Kumar for winning the silver medal.
Making the announcement minutes after Vijay Kumar won the silver, Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal said his name would also be recommended for Himachal Gaurav Award.
Earlier, The Chief of Army Staff, General Vikram Singh also congratulated Vijay Kumar for winning the silver medal in the 25m rapid fire pistol event. “It is the result of his untiring effort, dedication and will to win which are the hallmarks of the Indian Army” he said.