Rio Paralympic Games day 1: Aussie Smith finishes fifth in 10m Air Rifle

Day one of the Rio Paralympic Games featured the women’s 10m Air Rifle Standing SH1 at the Olympic Shooting Centre. The two Australians in the mix were defending bronze medallist Natalie Smith and Libby Kosmala who is competing at her 12th Games.

After the qualifying round, Natalie Smith found herself in seventh place on a score of 406.1, well within striking distance of first-place Zhang Cuping with a score of 413.4. Libby Kosmala finished 18th and did not progress to the final.

Natalie Smith managed to improve her position slightly in the final but just missed out on the medals in fifth place. In the end, the gold medal went to Slovakian Veronika Vadovicova.

“We all want to win gold, but I’m really pleased with fifth,” Smith told the ABC. “The competition coming into this has been very tough. I knew I really had to perform and I just dropped a couple of shots there but it just took me out”.

Keep an eye out for Natalie Smith in the Mixed 10m Air Rifle Prone SH1 on Sunday morning.

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