Scott targets Games glory

Steve Scott (right) and fellow shooter Matt French are set to represent England at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow
Steve Scott (right) and fellow shooter Matt French are set to represent England at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow

Battle shooter Steve Scott is targeting glory for the second successive Commonwealth Games.

The 29-year-old struck gold at the 2010 Games in Delhi and is aiming for a repeat performance at the 2014 version in Glasgow this weekend.

He said: “That’s the plan. I’m shooting more than good enough; it’s just if I perform on the day. I’m feeling really happy and confident; I’ve just got to stay focused and see how I go.”

Scott triumphed in the men’s double trap pairs event alongside Stevan Walton four years ago with a Commonwealth record of 189 points.

There is no pairs competition this time around so Scott is free to focus solely on the individual event, which takes place on Sunday.

Competitors will tackle five rounds of 30 targets in the initial 150-target qualifying stage, from which the top six will advance to the semi-finals. The top two in the semi-finals will go on to contest the gold medal match with those in third and fourth facing a shoot-off for bronze.

“You’ve got probably about eight shooters that can win it compared to the usual 15 and I consider myself one of those eight,” continued Scott, who has been appointed team captain for the England clay target shooting squad.

Among the other contenders are Scott’s England team-mate Matt French, 2010 medallist Tim Kneale (Isle of Man) and Australian’s double Olympic medallist Russell Mark, although Scott regards the event as wide open.

Scott goes into the Commonwealth Games buoyed by his victory at the European Shotgun Championships in Hungary last month when he edged out Russian star Vasily Mosin in a close-fought final.

The UK’s number one by a significant margin, Scott has also achieved two top 10 finishes in ISSF World Cup events this year.

He travelled up to Scotland last Thursday and has since spent several days training. Scott says the facilities at the shooting ground are good, even if the 1,200-yard walk to the range carrying all his equipment isn’t ideal.

Scott, who was interviewed on BBC television on Tuesday, enjoyed the opening ceremony on Wednesday night when he was part of a parade of athletes from the 71 participating nations and territories of the Commonwealth.

Singers Rod Stewart, Susan Boyle and Amy Macdonald were among those performing in front of an anticipated global television audience of more than a billion. More than 4,500 men and women will compete in events across 17 sports until August 3.