Deepika Kumari, Ankita Bhakat, Komalika Bari came up with a good performances under pressure as the India women’s recurve team won gold in Archery World Cup (Stage 1 for 2021), defeating Mexico 5-4 in shootoff in Guatemala on Sunday.
The Indians, seeded No 1 at the event after their good performance in the qualification rounds, won the tollercoaster final 57-56, 55-57, 55-57, 57-52, 27-26 (SO). Ana Vazquez, Alejandra Valencia, Aida Roman comprised the Mexican team.
After clinching the first end, Indians were put under the pump by some sharp shooting by the Mexicans, who roared back to clinch the second and third sets. India faced a must-win in the fourth set of regular time where they stepped up their game with 10, 9, 10, 10, 9, 9 to force the sudden-death type tiebreaker in the end.
In the shootoff, Bhakat and Bari managed 9 and 8 while the Mexicans started with 9, 10. Deepika Kumari simply had to shoot a perfect arrow to keep India’s hopes alive and she did just that to put Aida Roman, the 2012 Olympic silver medallist, under pressure. The Mexican shot 7 when a 9 was needed to win and the gold was India’s.
Earlier, the top-seeded Indian trio defeated Spain in straight sets 6-0 with some consistent shooting to set up a gold medal clash with second seeds Mexico.
Deepika, Ankita and Komalika shot 55, 56 and 55 to prevail over Elia Canales, Ines De Velasco and Leyre Fernandez Infante in straight sets.
In the quarter-finals, they had eliminated hosts Guatemala City by an identical 6-0 margin earlier in the day at the Sports Complex Los Arcos.