Shooting Australia today announced it has cancelled the Shooting Australia Open, scheduled for the
Sydney International Shooting Centre at Cecil Park on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, to mitigate risks
associated with COVID-19.
The Shooting Australia Open will be replaced by events exclusive to athletes who have previously
registered Tokyo Olympic Games Minimum Qualification Scores (MQS) in pistol, rifle and shotgun
disciplines and who are eligible for Australian Olympic Shooting Team selection.
The replacement events will be the fourth and final Tokyo Olympic Games nomination events.
Rifle events will be held at the Wingfield Rifle Range in Adelaide on Friday and Saturday, while pistol
and shotgun events will be held at the Sydney International Shooting Centre on Friday, Saturday and
Sunday. Event times are to be advised.
Shooting Australia Chief Executive, Luke van Kempen, said the decision was taken after a special
Shooting Australia Event Reference Group (SAERG) conferred with the NSW Government, NSW
Office of Sport, the Australian Olympic Committee, Australian Institute of Sport, medical experts,
member organisations and other key stakeholders.
Mr van Kempen said MQS athletes had been consulted earlier this week via their respective shooting
discipline head coaches and feedback was presented to a Shooting Australia Board meeting held
“SAERG members have been discussing the impacts of staging the Shooting Australia Open, in its
originally planned format, with key parties for several days,” said Mr van Kempen.
“First and foremost, Shooting Australia’s chief priority is the health of athletes, officials and
members of the community.
“Even though we estimated the number of attendees at the Shooting Australia Open would be
around 371 people, which is below the 500 people event threshold set by the Federal Government,
we believed it would be irresponsible to proceed with the event as originally planned,” he said.
“Instead, Shooting Australia will conduct closed Olympic nomination events for the 54 eligible
athletes, across all shooting disciplines, who have previously registered an MQS,” he added.
“Pistol and rifle are the only disciplines that are held indoors. The total number of attendees,
including athletes, officials and venue staff for these two separate events in two separate cities,
would be up to 35 people for each event. This is well within the Federal Government’s threshold of
100 people for an indoor event,” he said.
He added; “Our sport is one that can be undertaken while maintaining a safe social distance from
other competitors and officials. A number of guidelines will be implemented to allow for this
practice, and all athletes and officials will be well educated on these matters prior to their respective
Mr van Kempen said the new events will allow the Olympic nomination series to be completed on
schedule and provide athletes with the best available preparation time leading into the Tokyo
Mr van Kempen said Shooting Australia had already factored the likelihood that not all MQS athletes
would participate in the final nomination event before the Government thresholds were announced.
“As stated in our 2020 Olympic Games Nomination Criteria, athletes best three qualifying scores
from the four nomination events will be considered by the selectors,” he said.
“With three events concluded, we anticipated weeks ago there will be MQS athletes who will elect
not to attend the final nomination event because of their ranking on the qualification scoreboard.
“If there is any MQS athlete who does not wish to compete this week, there is, as outlined under
Extenuating Circumstances in the Nomination Criteria, provision for the selectors to consider an
athlete’s non-attendance when it comes to nominating athletes to the AOC for Olympic team
selection,” he added.
Shooting Australia will provide the AOC with the names of nominated athletes on March 29.
The Australian Olympic Shooting team is scheduled to be announced by the AOC on March 31.
Further information, Greg Campbell, PRISM Strategic Communications, Ph: 0418 239 139.