Indian compound archer Rakesh Kumar shot a career-best 699 points out of a possible 720 to grab the third place in the ranking round of the men’s open section of the Tokyo Paralympics on Friday.
In the men’s recurve open category, 2019 Asian Para Championship winner Vivek Chikara finished tenth while Shyam Sundar Swami finished 21st. Both the Indians were seeded straight into the second round in the draw of 64.
World No 22 Jyoti Baliyan, the only Indian female archer to have qualified, secured a 15th place ranking in the compound open event.
Ranking round results
Jyoti 15th seed (women’s), Rakesh 3rd, Shyam 21st (men’s), mixed team of Jyoti and Rakesh 6th.
Vivek 10th, Harvinder 21st
World No 11 Kumar, who won an individual gold medal at the first world ranking tournament in Dubai earlier this year, narrowly missed out the second spot to Iranian Ramezan Biabani who also totalled 699 but placed higher than the Indian for shooting more arrows closest to the centre (X). The Indian shot 53 perfect 10s, including 17 closest to the centre, while his Iranian rival had 18 Xs.
Baliyan, a team silver medallist at the Asian Para Championships in 2019, shot 671 points.
Together, Baliyan and Kumar got sixth ranking in the compound mixed pair open category. The duo will open their campaign against Thailand in the compound mixed pair open which has a draw of 16.
In the men’s recurve open category, Chikara finished tenth after shooting 609 points, ahead of 2018 Para Asian Games champion Harvinder Singh who qualified as 21st seed.
Chikara shot 20 perfect 10s and 2 Xs in his 72 arrows, while Singh ended with 600 points to slip out of top-20.
The open event combines W2 (Wheelchair 2) and ST (Standing) classes. Athletes who have an impairment in the legs and use a wheelchair or have a balance impairment and shoot standing or resting on a stool can compete in open category.
In para archery, the use of assistive equipment or an assistant is allowed depending on the impairment, while a variety of techniques may be employed, including pulling the bowstring with the mouth
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