Maltese sharpshooter William Chetcuti will be competing in the men's double trap event at the Rio Olympics today at 2pm local time, and the 2011 world cup winner represents Malta's best hope of winning its first-ever Olympic medal.
Not familiar with double trap shooting? Here's a quick guide to help guide you through the event.
What is double trap?
Double trap is a shotgun sport in which participants attempt to hit a series of clay disks fired into the air and away from the shooter at a high speed.
As opposed to trap shooting, two targets are released simultaneously into the air each time.
Olympic rules state that cartridges must have a maximum load of 24 grams, with a shot size no larger than 2.5mm.
Participants must fire on 75 rounds of clay disks, for a total of 150 disks in total. The top six shooters then compete in a semifinal round involving 25 rounds of two disks each, for a total of 50 disks.
The two best shooters from among the semifinalists will then go head-to-head to determine the gold and silver medallists, with the 3rd and 4th placed shooters competing to take home the bronze.
What's the difference between trap, double trap and skeet shooting?
In trap shooting, the shooter has no idea whether disk targets will fly out straight, to the left or right. Double trap shooting is similar, only two targets are released simultaneously, rather than just one. In skeet shooting, targets are launched from two opposing towers, with shooters advancing from one tower to the other in a semicircle as they shoot targets.
Who will be competing?
22 athletes representing 15 different countries will compete.
Shooters Fehaid Aldeehani and Ahmad Alafasi are competing as an independent athletes given that their nation, Kuwait, has been suspended by the IOC over government interference in sport.
The six shooters who do best in the first two rounds will then compete in a final round to determine the medalists.
Who are the favourites?
Australian shooter James Willet is the man to watch, with most bookies ranking him the favourite to win gold. The 20-year-old is the youngest-ever shooter to be ranked world number 1 in the sport, despite having started to practice double trap shooting just two years ago.
Russian Vasily Mosin, 44, is many bookies' second favourite. The veteran shooter competed at the 2004, 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games, finishing 19th, 14th and third respectively.
In most bookmakers' estimation, Malta's own William Chetcuti is right behind these two shooters. William Hill reckon Chetcuti is the joint silver medal favourite with Mosin, while Bet365 reckon he's likely to win bronze. Paddy Power have him ahead of Mosin, making him the 7/2 favourite to take home the silver medal.
US shooter Walton Eller is usually ranked as the fourth favourite by bookmakers. The four-time Olympian won a gold medal at the 2008 Olympics, setting an Olympic record in the process.
Independent journalism costs money. Support Times of Malta for the price of a coffee.Support Us