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OTHERS > China’s Guo defends pistol title in nail-biter

LONDON - Agence France-Presse

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China’s Guo Wenjun showed nerves of steel as she came from behind on the very last shot to successfully defend her 10m air pistol Olympic title in thrilling fashion yesterday.

With her final effort, Guo shot a 10.8, just 0.1 points short of a maximum score, drawing gasps from the packed crowd at the Royal Artillery Barracks and overhauling France’s Celine Goberville, who had led going into the last round.

Goberville could only manage 8.8, putting her level on points with Athens 2004 gold-medalist Olena Kostevych of Ukraine. In a shoot-off, Goberville recovered from her disappointment at missing gold and secured silver.

Ice-cool Guo, 28, who said her motto was, “Never give up”, maintained she always felt she had a chance of gold going into the final shot -- even though she was trailing by 0.5 points.

“I just focused on doing my best on the final shot,” she said, adding: “I think everyone is good, I just never give up.” Guo said she put a poor eighth shot out of her mind as the competition reached its nail-biting climax, adding: “It was done. I just couldn’t keep thinking about it.”

Goberville said she was proud to win France’s first medal of the Games and was not disappointed to miss out on gold by such a slender margin.

“I didn’t think about winning a medal. I’ve had a good season but these are my first Olympic Games and for me I thought the podium was not reachable,” she said.

July/30/2012

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