Indian archers Ankita Bhakat, Abhishek Verma and Jyothi Surekha Vennam kept medal hopes alive in the individual competitions by advancing to the quarterfinals of their respective events in the World Championships here.
India have already confirmed two medals by entering the compound women’s team and mixed team finals, which are scheduled later tonight.
In the individual recurve event, Ankita produced the biggest upset on Thursday when the 23-year-old Kolkata archer held her nerves to eliminate Korean fourth seed Kang Chae-Young, a team Olympic gold-medallist at the recently-concluded Tokyo Games.
Ankita dropped just one set to defeat the Korean heavyweight 6-4 (29-28, 28-28, 27-27, 24-29, 29-28) and set up a quarterfinal clash with Casey Kaufhold of the USA on Sunday.
Ankita started off in spectacular fashion, shooting two 10s en route to 29 out of 30, mounting early pressure on the Korean.
Thereafter, both the archers had a neck and neck battle tying two sets as Ankita held on to a slender 4-2 lead.
The Indian was wayward in the fourth set shooting in the red ring thrice (8, 8, 8) while Chae-Young was at her best (X, 10, 9) to bring the match on an even keel.
Locked 4-4, Ankita showed fine composure to fire in two 10s to clinch the issue.
Chae-Young had defeated Komalika Bari in the previous round. Ankita, meanwhile, had defeated 13th seed Alexandra Mirca. Ridhi Phor lost in the second round.
No male Indian archer got past the round of 16 with Aditya Choudhary the sole athlete to get that far.
India’s top compound archers Abhishek Verma and Jyothi Surekha Vennam also advanced into their respective last-eight rounds.
Recent World Cup gold-medallist Verma had two perfect rounds as he beat Jozef Bosansky of Slovakia 145-142 (29-28, 30-27, 28-29, 30-29, 28-29).
The former Asian Games team champion Verma will face Netherland’s Mike Schloesser, second seed and world No 1, in the last eight on Saturday.
Jyothi also capped a memorable outing showing the door to Chaewon So of Korea 146-142 (30-29, 29-29, 28-30, 29-29, 26-29).
Trailing 59-58 after first two series, Jyothi drilled in five perfect 10s in a row that included one X (arrow closest to the centre) to claim a 117-116 lead going into the final set of arrows.
The Korean buckled under pressure and shot an 8 as Jyothi clinched the issue with two 10s including one X. Jyothi will next face Croatian Amanda Mlinaric, two-time under-21 world champion.
Rest of the compound archers last before the round of 16 stages.
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