Deepika Kumari voted second-best archer of 2015 in World Archery Awards
Deepika Kumari was one of two Indian archers who found a top-5 spot, the other being Abhishek Verma
Capping a wonderful year for Indian archers, former World No. 1 recurve archer Deepika Kumari and Asian Games gold medallist compound archer Abhishek Verma both found a spot in the list of the top 5 archers of 2015.
The full results of the ‘World Archery Athlete of the Year 2015’ were released by the World Archery on Sunday where Deepika finished second-best while Verma ended up as the fourth-best in their respective sections.
The World Archery invites the national archery federations and archery experts to propose a five-athlete shortlist based on the previous year’s performances. After that, votes from the World Archery’s awards panel and the general public decide the eventual winner.
In the women’s recurve category, the reigning Olympic gold medallist Ki Bo Bae who won the World Championship title in 2015, was voted the best athlete of 2015. She earned 35% of the votes while Deepika finished right behind her with 18% of the votes.
The Indian’s biggest achievement last season was clinching the silver medal at the Archery World Cup Final in Mexico City. It was her fourth silver medal from this event. Besides that, she was also a part of the silver medal-winning recurve team at the prestigious World Championships and also added the bronze in Antalya World Cup as well as the mixed team silver from the Wroclaw World Cup.
In the men’s compound section, it was the Dane Stephan Hansen who emerged the winner with 25% of the votes. At 20, he had achieved the momentous feat of winning the World Championships at home in Copenhagen, besides being crowned the youth world champion for the third time.
In a very closely-contested battle, India’s Abhishek Verma could only secure the fourth place after securing 18% of the votes. The highest point for the 26-year-old came at the Archery World Cup Final where he grabbed his first ever medal – a silver – after a giant-killing run that saw him topple several seeds.
Apart from it, he also collected the gold medal at the Wroclaw World Cup and was a part of the bronze medal-winning men’s compound team at the Shanghai World Cup.