Dan Repacholi reckons that’s as good as it gets.
Farewelling his beloved sport with a gold medal on home soil in front of family and friends.
In fact, the Nulkaba 35-year-old rates better than all the rest his career-ending Commonwealth Games title in the men’s 50 metre pistol final at Belmont Shooting Centre on Wednesday.
“It’s right up there, right now it’s number one,” Repacholi told the Newcastle Herald. “Especially with the disappointment of the 10m event. To come out and smash this one. It was a really good way to finish.”
The retiring four-time Olympian was fourth in the men’s 10m air pistol final on Monday, missing the podium in an event he won in Glasgow four years ago.
But just 48 hours later he reloaded and produced the perfect parting shot – a Games-record score, a sixth Commonwealth medal and finishing international competition on top.
“To do that on the last shot is honestly fantastic,” he said.
“It’s really emotional. It was great to do it in front of my family and good to have them all there.”
Cheering from the stands with Australian supporter gear, home-made signs and all wearing replicas of Repacholi’s trademark rainbow socks were wife Alex, daughters Zoe and Asha, parents Colin and Geraldine as well as a host of other relatives.
But the rest of the crowd were also willing the bearded target-man across the line, and the longer the decider went the more they rallied.
“Having the whole crowd behind you was just awesome,” Repacholi said.
“There was hardly anyone not cheering for me. I won in Glasgow and it was cool to win there, but it was better to win here in front of everyone.”
He was placed fifth after the first stage, but rocketed into the lead with a 10 and 10.1 on his 13th and 14th shots respectively.
Eventual bronze medalist Om Mitharval of India drew level shortly after at 168.5 apiece, but Repacholi surged home featuring a 10.7 on his third last of 24 triggers.
His total of 227.2 “would compete anywhere in the world” and created a 6.7-point buffer to nearest rival Shakil Ahmed (220.5) of Bangladesh.
“I shot a really good final,” he said. “To win by over six points is huge.”
The Cessnock Pistol Club member said his first celebratory drink “didn’t even touch the sides”.
He made his Commonwealth Games debut in Melbourne in 2006, clinching the first of three gold medals.
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