Deepika Kumari, India’s top-ranked female archer, couldn’t step it up when it mattered. She lost the bronze medal play-off match at the recurve women’s category at the Archery World Cup Final in Yankton.
Deepika Kumari lost to Germany’s Michelle Kroppen 6-5, after forcing a shoot-off. The Indian archer shot an agonizing 6 to bow out on a whimper as Kroppen scored a 9 to win the bronze medal. In the process, Kroppen became the first German to win a World Cup Final medal.
Later, Atanu Das lost the bronze medal play-off match, losing 0-6 to to Turkey’s Mete Gazoz.
Deepika, the top seed in the Archery World Cup Final, started well beating Russia’s Svetlana Gomboeva 6-4 in the quarterfinals. However, she faltered against another Russian, Elena Osipova, 2-6 in the semifinals.
In the bronze medal play-off match against Kroppen, Deepika Kumari started on a horrid note. She lost the first two sets 28-30, 29-30 as the German raced to a quick 4-0 lead.
Deepika Kumari opened her account in the third set when both archers shared points at 28 apiece while the Indian fought hard to win the fourth 28-27 to crawl to a 3-5 scoreline.
Needing a win in the fifth set to force a shoot-off, Deepika Kumar upped the ante and scored 9,9 and a bulls eye shot to pip Kroppen by a single point (9, 9, 9). It forced a shoot-off.
Conditions a bane for Deepika Kumari, yet again
The adverse conditions proved to be a bane for Deepika Kumari again, as she couldn’t manage to read the conditions well. It is an issue that has been haunting Deepika Kumari for decades. Rainy, cold and windy conditions at Yankton did no good for the Indian archer. Guided by her husband, Atanu Das, she fell at the final hurdle, losing a prestigious World Cup Final medal.
Atanu Das also lost out on the bronze medal when he lost the bronze medal play-off match 0-6 to Turkey’s Mete Gazoz.
Atanu, like Deepika Kumari, started well in the quarterfinals overcoming Germany’s Maximilian Weckmueller 6-2. However, he fell to top-seed Brady Ellison of the USA 2-6 in the semi-finals.
Earlier, Abhishek Verma, India’s lone compound archer crashed out in the men’s individual quarterfinals, losing 146-142 to American Braden Gellenthien.