Le Chien-Ying qualifies for Mexico City by taking Medellin bronze

12 September 2015
Medellin (COL)
Winning the bronze medal in Medellin gave Le Chien-Ying enough points to leapfrog Khatuna Lorig into the top seven qualifiers for the Archery World Cup Final.

The Chinese Taipei team knew what was at stake in the Medellin bronze medal match.

If Le Chien-Ying beat teammate Tan Ya-Ting, Le would qualify for the 2015 Archery World Cup Final in Mexico City. But if Tan won – that last place would go to the USA’s Khatuna Lorig.

The Chinese Taipei team didn’t tell either Le or Tan just how much the match meant, but let them battle it out in the arena.

Things were not looking good for Chien-Ying. She lost the first two sets after her opponent shot a pair of 29s, and was quickly 4-0 down.

Tan’s form dropped in the third when she leaked her first eight of the match. Le shot just three nines, but it was a point more than her opponent – and she cut Tan’s lead to 4-2, then 4-4 after a 29-point fourth set.

From the brink of disaster, Le dragged the match back to a fifth-set decider.

Tan put in two nines, Le a 10, then an eight.

A last-arrow nine from Tan Ya-Ting meant the match and the Mexico City qualification all hung on Le Chien-Ying and whether she could a 10. It was the second time she’d been in that situation in the day, after shooting a 10 to win the recurve women’s team gold medal during the competition’s morning session.

Le shot, the arrow flew – and landed: 10.

“I had no idea about Mexico City before the match, but now I’m really excited,” said Le.

The Chinese Taipei team managers said they did not want to affect the archers’ performance with any added pressure that might come from knowing about the World Cup ranking situation.

“I didn’t expect the bronze medal. I just wanted to enjoy the competition and the atmosphere – but now I realise it was much more important for me,” Le said, laughing. “I’m glad they didn’t tell me.”

“It’s a great honour for me to qualify.”