The Glasgow Commonwealth Games competition is over for Cessnock’s shooting trio, who will head home with valuable experience, fond memories and their sights set the 2016 Olympics.
Nulkaba’s Daniel Repacholi won his first individual Commonwealth Games gold medal when he took out the men’s 10-metre air pistol final on Saturday, and added another bronze to his collection in the men’s 50-metre pistol final on Monday.
The triple Olympian showed nerves of steel in the shoot-off for gold, with a winning score of 199.5 ahead of India’s Prakash Nanjappa (198.2).
“I put the gun down, looked at the time left, looked at his (Nanjappa) score, and knew what I had to do. That was a normal shot, and that’s what I did,” Repacholi said – although he credited some of his good fortune to his ‘lucky’ rainbow socks, a gift from wife Alex prior to the Delhi games four years ago.
English veteran Michael Gault (176.5) claimed bronze in the 10-metre to equal the record for most decorated Commonwealth Games athlete, with a total of 18 medals from six Games.
Repacholi went on to compete in the 50-metre event on Monday, and finished the final with a score of 166.6 – just 0.4 points behind silver medallist Gurpal Singh of India.
Jitu Rai, also of India, won gold with a score of 174.1.
Repacholi won bronze in the 10-metre at the Delhi games four years ago, and teams gold and bronze in Melbourne in 2006.
His Cessnock Pistol Club teammate Blake Blackburn, of Bellbird, placed 14th in the 10-metre at Glasgow, his first Commonwealth Games.
Blackburn, who turns 22 on Sunday, shot a score of 562 – just seven points short of the qualifying score for the final.
The 2014 Australian champion, Blackburn now aims to make the squad for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, and will launch into training when he arrives home.
Clay target shooter Tom Turner, also of Bellbird, made the semi-finals of the men’s double trap on Sunday.
A dual Olympian but making his Commonwealth Games debut, Turner shot 128 to qualify in sixth place, and finished the closely-fought semi-final round in equal fifth with 25 out of 30 – two points behind first place.
The gold medal went to English shooter Steven Scott, with his compatriot Matthew French taking silver and Asab Mohd from India bronze.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.