By 9am on Day 4 of the Commonwealth Games the sun had already been in the sky for well over 3 hours and for everyone back home in Scotland we had already witnessed a fantastic opening ceremony and 3 full days of competition. As a nation there is no better sight than seeing Team Scotland walk into the stadium looking resplendent in their white and blue Team Scotland uniforms, and as the tradition of being the hosts for the previous Games, Scotland had the privilege of being first out. It was great to see so many of Scotland's shooting team appear front and centre in the mass of Scottish athletes, coaches and support team, getting involved in one of the rare occasions where not only do all the disciplines come together, but the athletes involved get to be part of a multi sport event competing under the Scottish flag.
Review of Day 4
By Day 4, the opening ceremony seemed a distant memory and while many sports were already well under way in the middle of intense competition, Day 4 was a significant one for Scottish Target Shooting's shooters as it marked the start of the shooting programme at the Games. While Scotland does not have an athlete competing in every category at the Games, the first day of the shooting programme did see two Scots involved with Caroline Brownlie and Jessica Liddon both competing in the Women's 10m Air Pistol Competition.
It was a good mixture of new talent and experience as Caroline was competing in her third Commonwealth Games having competed in Delhi 2010 and Glasgow 2014, while Jessica was competing at her first Games. In the Qualification round both athletes put in good displays with Jessica finishing 13th with a score of 362-5x and Caroline just slightly behind in 18th with a score of 359-5x, both sadly missing out on the final on this occasion.
However, Jessica will also be competing at the Women's 25m Sport Pistol competition taking place later in 48 hours time and with this be her favoured event, we have high hopes and of course wish her the best after a strong start.
Ones to Watch in Day 5
Day 5 of the 2018 Games sees Scotland's involvement in the shooting programme go up a gear as we have athletes competing in a number of events. In each case below please note the time stated in the Australian time but we have provided the British time too for setting your watch:
- First up at 09.00 (midnight GMT) is the Men's 10m Air Pistol Qualification where STS's Aedan Evans will be competing in his first Commonwealth Games after what has been a fantastic 12 months that has seen him rise through the ranks, including a 7th place in the Final of the World U21 Championships in Germany last year.
- Then at 10.00 (01.00 GMT on Monday) Jennifer and Seonaid McIntosh begin their search for Commonwealth silverware in the Women's 10m Air Rifle Qualification round. Jennifer will be competing in her third senior Commonwealth Games having competed at Delhi and Glasgow and Seonaid her second after competing in Glasgow 4 years ago. Both are coming off the back of a successful 2017 having made history by winning Gold medals at the European Championships in Baku with Jennifer winning the 50m Prone event and Seonaid the 50m 3P competition. However, both have a good track record at international competitions in the 10m Air Rifle event so we will be keeping everything crossed.
- Finally, also at 10.00 (01.00 GMT on Monday) Scotland's full-bore pairing of Ian Shaw and Alexander (Sandy) Walker will be getting under way in day 1 of the Queens Prize Pairs Final. Ian will be competing at his fifth Games (Manchester, Melbourne, Delhi and Glasgow) while Sandy will be competing at his first Games. Despite being a relatively new pairing, both competed for Scotland at the recent CSF Championships At Belmont in November last year where they came away with the Bronze medal so we hope they can do the same again, if not go one (or two!) steps further!
Not wanting to count any chickens but depending on how well Aedan, Seonaid and Jennifer get on in their qualification rounds, it is worth noting the finals for their events are scheduled to take place on the same day at the following times:
- 12.00 (03.00 GMT on Monday) for the Men's 10m Air Pistol Finals
- 13.30 (04.30 GMT on Monday) for the Women's 10m Air Rifle Finals
We wish all STS athletes all the best and I am sure there will be some bleary eyes tomorrow!
Although we compete in and have a particular fondness for different disciplines, we are one brilliant sport and one great country. Show your support by using the hashtag #TeamSTS
Report by Oliver Barsby, Photos credited to Donald McIntosh