Archery World Cup: Atanu Das narrowly loses to the World No. 1 in bronze medal play-off
India thus ends their Antalya World Cup Stage 3 campaign with a solitary medal.
Indian recurve archer Atanu Das proved that he is peaking at the right time just ahead of the Rio Olympics. After settling for the silver medal in the mixed recurve match alongside Deepika Kumari, he put up a stupendous effort – albeit in a loss – when he squared off against the reigning World No. 1 Kim Woojin of Korea in the individual bronze medal play-off at the Antalya World Cup Stage 3 on Sunday.
It was a neck and neck battle where the Indian squandered a 4-0 lead to succumb to a defeat by the closest of margins – at 10-10 in the ensuing shoot-off, the Korean’s arrow was nearer to the centre which awarded him the win.
The 24-year-old Kolkata-born archer was in sparkling form when he took on the second seed. 51 ranking places separate them yet Das refused to be intimidated. He quickly surged to a 4-0 advantage, riding on five 10s.
Woojin finally lifted his game and hit three consecutive 10s to take the next set and reduce the deficit to 2-4. The fourth set was a tie where both amassed 29 apiece and the set score was then 5-3 in Atanu’s favour.
Woojin, being the champion that he is, fired another three 10s to grab the fifth set 30-29 and even the set score 5-5.
Both were at par in the shoot-off after scoring 10 each but the Korean took the match 6-5 and the bronze medal by virtue of his arrow being more in the proximity of the centre.
India thus ends their campaign with a solitary medal – in the mixed recurve section. If this World Cup showed us that Deepika Kumari still needs a lot of sharpening of her skills before heading to Rio, it also gave up hope in the form of Atanu Das.