William Chetcuti and Nathan Lee Xuereb left the island yesterday on their way to Maribor, Slovenia, where they will take part in the 2012 ISSF World Cup finals shoot.

For the first time in the history of shooting sport locally, both Maltese contenders for the finals have qualified on their own merit following a series of fine showings in various events leading to the finals.

This is no mean feat from all aspects as only the best 12 Double Trap shooters in the world have made it to Maribor and two hail from the Malta Shooting Sport Federation fold.

Russia will have three competitors in the finals but no other country have more than one representative in Double Trap apart from Malta.

Chetcuti and Xuereb took part in the ISSF series this year and gained valuable points mostly from the shoot in Tucson, US, where Chetcuti placed second and Xuereb was fourth overall.

This will be Chetcuti’s third time in World Cup finals following the participations in Dubai 2005 and Al Ain, UAE, six years later.

In Tucson, Xuereb, 15, wrote down his name in the annals of the World Cup when he became the youngest ever shooter to figure in the barrage and eventually also the youngest ever to qualify for the finals of the prestigious ISSF competition.

In Maribor, the two Maltese shooters are under the charge of long-time coach Jimmy Bugeja.

The Double Trap event will be staged on Monday. Shooters will have to target as many points as possible from the first three rounds of 50 clays before the barrage.

The other ten shooters to qualify for the Double Trap final are Peter Wilson (Britain), Hakan Dahlby (Sweden), Vasily Mosin (Russia), Ronjan Sodhi (India), Joshua Richmond (US), Mikhail Leybo (Russia), Vitaly Fokeev (Russia), Francesco D’Aniello (Italy), Fehaid Aldehani (Kuwait) and Andreas Loeb (Germany).


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