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Kalman and Berg claim 10m air rifle junior titles at European Championships in Gyor

Home athlete Balint Kalman, 18, defeated Sweden’s world champion Victor Lindgren to claim victory in the 10m air rifle men junior event at the European Championships 10m rifle and pistol in Gyor, Hungary.

Earlier in the day the 10m air rifle women junior title had gone to Norway’s 16-year-old world junior champion Synnoeve Berg (pictured).

In a junior category that is open to competitors under 21 on December 31 of the competition year Kalman won by 251.2 points to 248.9 after maintaining his lead throughout the elimination rounds.

It was a third European junior medal for Kalman, who earned bronzes in the air rifle team men junior at Hamar in 2022 and in the 10m air rifle mixed team junior event at last year’s 10m Championships in Tallinn.

Lindgren, who will not turn 21 until May 16 this year, thus added a silver medal to the gold he won at last year’s World Championships in Baku.

The Swede had topped qualifying with 628.7 from Kalman, who had totalled 628.3.

Bronze went to Austria’s Patrick Entner, who finished one place ahead of his compatriot Johannes Kuen. The efforts of these two in the morning qualifying, along with Florian Gugele, had earned Austria team gold ahead of Sweden and Italy.

Germany’s Nils Palberg finished fifth, with Tomasso Roberto of Italy sixth, Evan Throndsen of Norway seventh and Filip Maletic of Croatia eighth.

Berg, who won her world junior title in Changwon last year and also shared in a European air rifle team women junior silver in 2023, maintained momentum in Gyor as she dominated the European final, finishing with a total of 252.4 that included one maximum 10.9 and not a single score lower than 10.0.

Silver went to Switzerland’s 18-year-old Alexia Tela, who totalled 249.8, with Ukraine’s 17-year-old Mariia Stashko earning bronze.

Aleksandra Havran of Serbia, who had topped qualifying with 631.4, one place above the eventual gold medallist, missed the podium by one place.

But Havran’s effort played a large part in Serbia earning the team gold ahead of Norway, with bronze going to Germany.

Fifth place in the final went to Bulgaria’s Marieta Kaneva and sixth place to Christina Hillinger of Austria.

Anna Toth of Hungary was seventh, and Helena Ecale of France eighth.

The first final of the day, the 10m air pistol mixed team junior, saw the Georgia 2 pairing of Mariami Prodiashvili and Giorgi Mumladze secure gold after earning a 17-15 win over the Germany 1 team of Celina Becker and Eduard Baumeister.

Azerbaijan 1, comprising Leyli Aliyeva and Vladislav Kalmikov, claimed bronze with a 16-2 win over Latvia 2’s Kristiana Agule and Daniels Vilcins.

 

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