India’s Prathamesh Jawkar won silver in the men’s individual compound archery event at the World Cup Final in Hermosillo, Mexico on Saturday night local time (Sunday morning IST).
In a tense final, Jawkar lost to Denmark’s Mathias Fullerton by millimetres in the shoot-off after both players shot 148 after five Ends.
Abhishek Verma missed out on a podium place after losing to Mike Schloesser 150-149 in the bronze medal match.
It was a disappointing day for Jyothi Sureka Vennam and Aditi Gopichand Swami as both exited at the quarter-final stage in the women’s compound event.
Silver for Jawkar
Fourth seed Jawkar came into the Archery World Cup Final on the back of a stunning rookie season which saw him win an individual gold at the World Cup Stage 2 in Shanghai, a men’s team gold at the World Cup Stage 4 in Paris and a men’s team bronze at the World Cup Stage 3 in Medellin.
He began his campaign in Hermosillo by comfortably beating Mexico’s Miguel Becerra 149-141. In the semi-final, the 20-year-old Indian faced four-time World Cup Finals gold medallist Mike ‘Mr Perfect’ Schloesser.
In a high quality semi-final, Schloesser dropped a point in the second End to give Jawkar the upper hand. The Indian was calm throughout, matching the Dutchman’s 30s with 30s of his own as he beat Schloesser 150-149 for the second time in his career.
Verma, on the other hand, had made it to the semi-final after beating the USA’s Sawyer Sullivan 10-9 in a shoot off after both shot scores of 146.
Verma faced Fullerton in the semi-final and both began with 30s in the first End. However, Verma dropped a point each in the three subsequent ends as Fullerton shot 30s. The Indian finally shot a 30 in the fifth and final end but Fullerton did not give an inch away as he clinched a spot in the final winning 150-147.
The final saw two 20-year-olds in Jawkar and Fullerton clash for a first World Cup Finals gold medal.
It was not the best of starts for Jawkar as he began the final with a 9 and he played catchup with Fullerton as the Dane shot 30s in the first three Ends. Fullerton finally dropped a point in the fourth end as Jawkar levelled the scores 119-119 in the fourth end.
There was still more drama to come as Jawkar shot a 9 with his first arrow in the fifth End only for Fullerton to repay the favour by shooting another 9. With the scores level at 148-148 after five Ends, the final was decided on shoot-off.
Both the 20-year-olds shot in the X circle but Fullerton’s arrow was just a bit closer to the bullseye than Jawkar’s as the Dane won gold.
Verma took on Schloesser in a bronze medal match featuring two experienced archers. In yet another high quality contest, neither archer dropped a point in the first four Eames. However, Verma began the fifth with a stray 9. Schloesser punished Verma by shooting yet another 30 to clinch bronze.
In the women’s compound event, Vennam lost to eventual champion Sara Lopez 149-144 in the quarter-final. Swami also exited at the quarter-final stage losing to eventual runner-up Tanja Gellenthien 10-9 in a shoot off after both finished with scores of 145.