Stricter rules for precision pistol competition

Stricter rules for precision pistol competition
A precision pistol shooting team member practising at the National Shooting Centre yesterday. Precision pistol competition will be offered at the SEA Games for the first time since 2005.

They are experienced handlers of firearms in their day jobs and have gone for club competitions.

But Team Singapore's six-member precision pistol team still have butterflies in their stomach over competing at the South-east Asia Games here in June.

The precision pistol competition (PPC), which offers four gold medals across both genders, is making only its second appearance at the Games, after Manila 2005 when Singapore won a silver.

A 9mm weapon is used in the non-Olympic event, with competitors required to take 150 shots in various positions over four distances.

However, the key difference this year will be the adoption of the WA1500 international standard, which has stricter rules on weapon modification.

Also, instead of four targets in 2005, PPC shooters will engage in a solitary target.

The team - three men and three women and aged between 34 and 46 -are from branches of the Home Team, such as the Singapore Police Force, Singapore Prison Service and the Central Narcotics Bureau.

"If you are shooting for a club and you don't win, so be it; it is just not your day," said Peter Teh, 46, an operations officer with the Gurkha contingent.

"But a lot of investment has been poured into us. There are a lot of expectations of us, and we have a lot of expectations of ourselves.

"Even though we don't admit it, internally we know that we have to achieve good results. That's why we are training so hard."

Competition

About 20 shooters were nominated by the Home Team last June. The training squad were trimmed to 12 last December for a competition in Adelaide, where three shooters finished in the top 10 in a field of 60 shooters.

Norizan Mustafa, 34, is one of the least experienced, having picked up precision shooting only last May.

The prisons officer said: "I was shooting 9mm weapons, but not PPC style. I took part in some competitions and then was nominated to join the PPC team.

"I didn't know whether I could pull it off, but the seniors showed us the ropes and helped us a lot."

They have been training four times a week at the National Shooting Centre in Lim Chu Kang, but will ramp it up to six times weekly from next month.

Teh said: "We train to win, so the pressure is normal. As athletes, we should be able to take the pressure and perform in high-intensity environments.

"We don't just want to be participants at the SEA Games, we want to be winners, and we are all fighters."

sayheng@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on April 27, 2015.
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