Archery World Championship

Indian women’s compound archery team wins gold in World Championship

NEW DELHI: In a remarkable display of skill and precision, the Indian women’s compound archery team, comprising Jyothi Surekha Vennam, Aditi Swami, and Parneet Kaur, achieved a historic feat by securing a gold medal at the World Archery Championship in Berlin on Friday.

The triumphant team emerged victorious in the final, where it outclassed Mexico with an impressive scoreline of 235-229.

The Indian trio showcased its exceptional talent and determination on the world stage. This remarkable achievement not only brought glory to the nation but also marked India’s first gold medal in the championship.

Under the calming influence of Italian foreign coach Sergio Pagni, a two-time World team gold winner, the second-placed Indian side, featuring an ideal mix of youth and experience, shot consistently to win all four ends (59-57, 59-58, 59-57, 58-57).

Prior to its stellar performance in the final, the Indian team had already demonstrated its capability by ousting strong contenders in earlier rounds. The threesome overcame Colombia with a score of 220-216 in the semifinals and secured a hard-fought victory against Chinese Taipei in the quarterfinals, with a score of 228-226.

This is the first time Indian archers became world champions after the country.

India, which made its World Archery Championship debut in Punta Ala (Italy) in 1981, had previously lost in the final in the World Archery Championship four times in recurve section and five times in the non-Olympic compound discipline.

“We were focused on the process. We had won enough silver medals and we had decided on the eve of the final that we will win gold. This is a start and we will win more medals,” Jyothi said.

The 17-year-old Aditi, who recently became U-18 world champion, is the junior-most member of the team. “It is a special moment to win the first medal and see the Indian flag go up,” she said.

“Despite the noise from the stands, we did not get distracted and focused on our shooting,” said 18-year-old Parneet, a 2021 World Under-18 and a 2023 World Under-21 team champion.

At a time when Indian recurve archers are in a downward spiral, the current achievement, albeit in a non-Olympic compound section, will be a big relief.

India had last time won a medal in recurve discipline of the World Archery Championship in the 2019 edition in Den Bosch, The Netherlands when the men’s team of Tarundeep Rai, Atanu Das and Pravin Jadhav had settled for a silver medal.

It was a big relief especially for 27-year-old Jyothi who finally won a gold medal after missing out on four occasions.

In the last edition in Yankton 2021, she lost in individual, team and mixed pair finals. Her maiden final appearance was with the team in the 2017 Mexico City edition when she was with Trisha Deb and Lily Chanu Paonam.

Overall, Jyothi now has one gold, four silver and two bronze medals from the World Championship.

“It was a historic moment … we became world champion defeating Colombia in the semifinal and Mexico in the final (two great compound archery heavyweights),” said national high performance director Sanjeeva Singh.

Indian archers, who have bagged World under-21 and under-18 titles, had never won a World crown at the elite level.

The result: 

Women, Team Compound: India (V. Jyothi Surekha, Aditi Swami, and Parneet Kaur) bt Mexico (Dafne Quintero, Ana Sofia Hernandez Jeon, Andrea Becerra) 235-229.

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