Birthday girl Laetisha Scanlan has defended her Commonweath title in the women’s trap.Australian shooter Laetisha Scanlan has backed up her 2014 Commonwealth Games trap triumph with another gold medal at Belmont.
Celebrating her 28th birthday, Scanlan hit 38 of her 50 targets on Friday to finish atop the podium for the second straight Games, edging out Northern Ireland’s Kirsty Barr in a nailbiting finish.
It comes after Olympic gold medallist and world No.1 Catherine Skinner – one of only eight Australians to win gold in Rio – crashed out in qualifying.
It was a case of deja vu for the Victorian, who had to win a sudden-death shoot-off to book her spot in the final – just as she did in Glasgow.
“I don’t know why I make it so hard for myself,” a teary-eyed Scanlan told the crowd after sealing victory.
She capitalised after New Zealand’s Natalie Rooney, who Skinner beat to win gold in 2016, was the first to miss in the shoot-out by failing to shatter her eighth target.
She was never headed after taking the lead in the final, despite missing twice in her last five shots to give Barr an opening.
She was then serenaded by an impromptu rendition of Happy Birthday by packed crowd at the Brisbane complex before Scanlan made a beeline for her father, who first got her into the sport.
It is Australia’s third gold medal in shooting and eighth in total with one day of competition to go.
Australian Associated Press