Cobbitty shooter in box seat for Olympic qualification

On target: Thomas Grice performed well in the Olympic qualifiers and is in the box seat to attend the Tokyo games. Pictures: Shooting Australia
On target: Thomas Grice performed well in the Olympic qualifiers and is in the box seat to attend the Tokyo games. Pictures: Shooting Australia

"Hurry up and wait."

That's the situation for Olympic hopeful Thomas Grice.

The trap shooter from Cobbitty is in the box seat for Olympic qualification, but the postponement of the Japan games means he'll have to wait a little longer to find out if he's going to be an Olympian.

The 27-year-old is closer than he's ever been to qualification.

Shooting Australia's final qualification tournament for the Olympic Games was held at Cecil Park's Sydney International Shooting Centre at the weekend.

Grice performed well and landed in second position overall for his discipline - which should secure him a place in the Australian Olympic team.

"I came in second place in the series, and trap shooting has two quotas for the Olympics," he said.

"The first place is automatically through, but it's up to the discretion of Shooting Australia if the second place makes the team."

Shooting Australia's official team announcement was scheduled to take place on March 31, but Tuesday's announcement that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games had been postponed to 2021 has pushed back the announcement.

"The IOC (International Olympic Committee) have given themselves four weeks to come up with a plan and I think Shooting Australia will be going off that before they make their decisions," Grice said.

The trap shooter - who has been partaking in the sport his grandfather introduced him to for 15 years - said it was "frustrating" to have worked so hard to reach a certain point, and still not know where his future lies.

Grice went close to qualifying for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro and has travelled to the likes of India, Malta and the UAE for international shooting events.

He also won the inaugural mixed pairs trap shooting world championship in Russia last year alongside Penny Smith.

Grice said he was ready to play the waiting game because he loved the sport so much.

"I love the community of shooting, the people you get to meet when you travel around the world," he said.

"And the feeling when you've shot well in a tournament - it's a great feeling."

Grice is a member of the Sydney Clay Target Club and spends a great deal of time training at the "world class" Cecil Park venue, which was used in the Sydney 2000 Olympics.

Waiting game: Grice won't know whether he's qualified or not for a few more weeks.

Waiting game: Grice won't know whether he's qualified or not for a few more weeks.