NEW DELHI: Commonwealth Games gold medal winning Indian shooter Apurvi Chandela on Saturday qualified for next year's Olympic Games after notching up the 10m air rifle bronze in the ongoing ISSF World Cup (Rifle/Pistol) in Changwon, Korea.
Apurvi shot a total of 185.6 in the finals, to finish behind Pejcic Snjezana of Croatia, who won gold, and Ivana Maksimovic of Serbia, who clinched the silver medal.
Pejcic eventually finished with a score of 209.1 to Ivana's 207.7 at the end of the gold medal match up. There were three Olympic quota places to be bagged in the event.
"A World Cup medal was something that I have been aiming for a long time, and now that I have it, it really makes me very happy. What adds on to the happiness is winning the second quota place for my country for the Rio Olympics," said an elated Apurvi after winning her medal on Saturday.
Talking about her plans going forward Apurvi said she would look to win more medals heading into the Olympic year.
"This win has helped me feel more confident towards my preparation for the Rio Olympics and I will work towards securing more podium finishes in the competitions I participate in this year," she said.
"I would also like to thank the NRAI for all the support it has given me to achieve this quota place and medal," she added.
The National Rifles Association of India congratulated Apurvi for her triumph.
"We are delighted that Apurvi has won India's second Olympic quota place. She has led the charge for the Indian contingent from the front, being the fighter that she is. Today I reflect back on the day before the 2014 Commonwealth Games finals, where Apurvi tore her ligament and was in acute pain and yet finished with a near perfect score," NRAI president Raninder Singh said.
"This was clear evidence of her mental and physical strength which is starting to bear fruit now. We wish her all the best and hope to see her returning with many more accolades in the future," he added.
Pistol ace Jitu Rai had won India's first Olympic quota place at the World Championships in Granada, Spain last year, when he won silver in the 50m Free Pistol event.
Each country can win a maximum of 30 quota places from a total of 15 shooting disciplines (including shotgun events), two each from each discipline.