Sonepat, August 5
India will have a new look squad at next month’s Archery World Championships after none of the archers, who had participated at the Tokyo Olympics, could clear the selection trials here on Thursday.
The four archers, who could not win a medal at Tokyo, failed to finish inside top-three in the two-day trials conducted just a day after their return from the Olympics.
World number one Deepika Kumari, who lost out to eventual gold medalist An San in the quarters at Tokyo Olympics, finished fourth in the trials.
Komalika Bari, 17-year-old upcoming Haryana girl Ridhi Phor, and Ankita Bhakat made the cut taking the top-three spots.
Among men, Punjab’s Aditya Chaudhary, 19-year-old Parth Salunkhe of Maharashtra and 2014 Youth Olympic bronze medalist Atul Verma grabbed the top-three places, ahead of Tarundeep Rai (ninth), Atanu Das (17th) and Pravin Jadhav (20th) .
“It’s a very promising sign that the juniors are coming up in the senior team. They are the future, ”Dronacharya and Arjuna Awardee Sanjeeva Singh, who oversaw the trials at the SAI Sonepat here, told PTI.
The trials for the September 19-26 Yankton World Championships had four rankings rounds from where top-six archers played round robin matchplay to determine the top-three.
“The average age of the side is less than 20 years. It’s a very promising sign for the 2024 Olympics, ”the former Olympian added.
Indian archers had yet another below par outing at the Olympics as none of them could earn the elusive medal in the sport.
The men’s team and mixed pair teams lost their respective quarterfinal matches to Korea.
Atanu Das was the best among the men’s trio, making the last-16 in the men’s individual competition, where he went down to home favorite Takaharu Furukawa, the eventual bronze medallist.
India also picked compound archery teams in the men’s and women’s sections for the Yankton meet.
Recurve, men: Aditya Chaudhary (Punjab), Parth Salunkhe (Maharashtra) and Atul Verma (SSCB); women: Komalika Bari (Jharkhand), Ridhi (Haryana) and Ankita Bhakat (Jharkhand).
Compound, men: Abhishek Verma (Delhi), Sangam Singh Bisla (AAI) and Rishab Yadav (Haryana); women: Muskan Kirar (MP), Jyothi Surekha Vennam (PSPB) and Priya Gurjar (Rajasthan). PTI