By Michael Pavitt

Sir Phillip Craven met former basketball teammate Martin McElhatton at the IPC Shooting World Cup event ©WheelpowerInternational Paralympic Committee (IPC) President Sir Phillip Craven has attended the opening day of the IPC Shooting World Cup in Stoke Mandeville Stadium in Britain, with the first three gold medals decided.

Sir Phillip praised the event which is set to see 80 athletes from across the world compete across the three days of competition.

"The real first thing that I sensed was the passion and enthusiasm of the organisers, and the athletes too," Sir Phillip said.

"But of course you don't know that when they are concentrating like mad to keep calm and shoot accurately.

"Para-sport was spread to the world from here, Stoke Mandeville is definitely the birthplace of the Paralympic Movement."

Slovakia's world champion Veronika Vadovicova clinched gold in the women's R2 10 metre air rifle standing SH1 event, ahead of Australia's 73-year-old Elizabeth Kosmala, with the two women the last remaining competitors in the elimination event.

Vadovicova led the Australian heading into final shot of the contest and secured gold by earning 20.7 points, giving her a total score 205.4, while Kosmala earned 200.7 for silver and Britain's Lorraine Lambert took bronze with 177.7.

A total of 80 athletes are competing in the IPC Shooting World Cup at Stoke Mandeville ©WheelpowerA total of 80 athletes are competing in the IPC Shooting World Cup at Stoke Mandeville ©Wheelpower

Azerbaijan's Yelena Taranova led the women's P2 10 air pistol SH1 event from start to finish as she comfortably won gold with score of 194.4, while Ukraine's Iryna Liakhu posted 183.4 to clinch silver.

Ukrainian shooters performed well throughout the event as Anastasiia Skok claimed a bronze medal with a score of 162.3, while her teammate Olga Kovalchuk missed out on the medals with 143.1.

France also ended the first day of competition with a gold to their credit after Richard Didier's score of 203.7 saw him win the men's R1 10m air rifle standing event.

The Frenchman had seen off competition from United Arab Emirates London 2012 gold medallist Abdulla Sultan Alaryani who scored 202.4 to win silver, while his compatriot Obaid Aldahmani's 179.9 saw him take bronze.

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

Related stories
March 2015: Croatia to host first of three IPC Shooting World Cup qualifying events for Rio 2016
December 2014: Visually impaired shooting Grand Prix to be held at Stoke Mandeville Stadium in 2015
November 2014: IPC Shooting World Cup events in France, Australia and US named Rio 2016 qualifiers