World and Olympic champions Niccolo Campriani and Abhinav Bindra have overcome many challenges in their lives and fabulous sporting careers.
But they are currently engaged in a task arguably more demanding than any they have faced previously: helping three refugee shooters, Mahdi, Khaoula and Luna, compete in the Tokyo Olympics.
Three-time Olympic champion Campriani started the project and Bindra opted to support the venture on hearing about it.
“Seeing the resolve, determination and commitment, I volunteered to help,” said Bindra.
Addressing an online media conference, Campriani and Bindra talked about the five-part video series ‘Taking Refuge: Target Tokyo 2020’, shot by the Olympic Channel and released on Monday, and the manner in which they had been preparing the three for competitions.
Bindra has borrowed the rifle that he had donated to the Olympic museum for use till the Tokyo Games.
Mahdi and Khaoula had the experience of training in Bengaluru with some of the best Indian shooters, and got to use the high-performance equipment at the Abhinav Bindra Centre.
Campriani said that it was much more than giving the new shooters a chance to compete in the Olympics.
Giving an insight into the various challenges for the selected shooters, including the exposure straightaway at international competitions, Campriani said providing mental support through experts would help them in both sport and life.
“They are training well to reach a competitive level. They have one more year to train,” said Campriani.
“They are the best-prepared athletes in terms of media training, as they have faced the camera so much,” said Bindra on a lighter note.
”Your last shot in the Olympics is not going to define who you are. Sport is not the only thing in life.
“It is interesting to see my sport through their eyes,” summed up the Italian on the fascinating journey of becoming Olympic athletes in such a short span.
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