New Delhi, July 26, 2021- In the absence of one Amber, another Amber takes the spotlight at the Tokyo Olympics.
In the women’s skeet event at the Asaka Shooting Range on Monday, the winner was a shooter whose name was Amber. But it was not with the surname Hill, the British world No. 1 who missed the event after testing positive for the COVID-19 virus.
It was the lady with the surname ‘English’, a first lieutenant with the marksmanship unit of the American Army, who finally got the chance to have a crack at the Olympics stage, winning the gold medal on Monday. She had missed out on the 2012 London Olympics and was a non-competing alternative in 2016 Rio.
Amber Hill, the British shooter and a favourite to win the skeet event, was forced to pull out of the Olympics following a positive COVID-19 test on the day she was to board the flight to Tokyo. The 23-year-old, ranked No. 1 in the world, had won her quota with a gold medal at the ISSF World Cup in New Delhi in March this year.
The 31-year-old Amber English from Colorado, USA set a new Olympic record of 56 in the final, outclassing the 2016 Rio Olympics champion Diana Bacosi of Italy and Wei Meng of China, the world record holder in the event.
“All I could control in the final was just my own shooting and my own emotions, but it’s always down to the last wire with the skeet. We are very fortunate to be here to be able to compete. You know everyone wanted to compete last year but we are very fortunate to still be here and do what we do. We appreciate everything,” Amber English told the media after the match.
Amber English is the second American to become a gold medallist in the event. She also continued the legacy of women skeet shooters from her country winning medals in the event in four consecutive Olympics.
Legendary skeet shooter Kim Rhode won silver in 2008, gold in 2012 and bronze in 2016 before failing to qualify for Tokyo.
It was a double treat for the USA as Vincent Hancock claimed the gold medal in men’s skeet shooting. The two-time gold medallist, in 2008 and 2012, hit 59 out of 60 shots in the finals. (Agency)