Mexico City 2015: Mixed teams competition preview
The 2015 Archery World Cup Final runs on 24/25 October in Mexico City .
The mixed team competition pits the best compound and recurve pairs across the Archery World Cup season against a pair from the host nation. In 2015, Mexico’s best compound and recurve mixed teams take on compound challengers from Denmark and a recurve partnership from Korea.
Recurve Mixed Team
The Korean squad attended three Archery World Cup stages in 2015. The Korean mixed team won all three Archery World Cup stages the squad attended: Shanghai, Antalya and Medellin. No questions there, then.
Closest to Korea in the rankings was China, a whole 14 points behind the leader’s 48.
Luis Alvarez and Alejandra Valencia were given the daunting task of taking the Koreans on in Mexico City when they were selected to represent the host nation on their home soil Archery World Cup Final.
Final: Korea / Mexico
Both top individual seeds at Mexico City 2015, the hosts will need to draw on the combined power of a full arena and city-wide support to pull the rug from under the Koreans’ feet and pull off a dramatic upset.
There’s pedigree on the Mexican side: Luis reigns as Toronto 2015 Pan American Games Champion, while Alejandra is a multiple medallist in individual, team and mixed team competition on the Archery World Cup circuit.
What’s more, it was a Mexican mixed team that travelled to Lausanne at the end of 2014 that won the previous season’s Archery World Cup Final mixed team title. That pairing was Aida Roman and Luis Eduardo Velez.
Big ask and big responsibility for the 2015 Mexican pair, who also face Woojin and Misun in their respective first-round individual matches!
Compound Mixed Team
Denmark took a pair of mixed team gold medals – in Antalya and Wroclaw – as Stephan Hansen paired with Sarah Holst Sonnischsen then Tanja Jensen to put the Danish team head-and-shoulders above any challengers in the World cup rankings.
The Danes also finished fifth at stage one, in Shanghai, and ninth in Medellin to finish the season.
As the year drew to a close, the only team that could catch Denmark – Colombia – lost to India in the Medellin 2015 quarters, and dropped out of the race.
Stephanie Sarai Salinas and Mario Cardoso were chosen to represent Mexican interests against the formidable Danes on home soil. Mexico had seventh in Antalya and Medellin, ninth in Shanghai and Wroclaw – but with changing line-ups.
Final: Denmark / Mexico
Though not competing in the individual event, Stephan Hansen made the trip to Mexico to compete in the mixed team competition he helped bring home during the season. The young World Archery Champion, since winning in front of the Danish Parliament at Copenhagen 2015, shoots with an archer he hasn’t paired with since the first stage of the season in Erika Anear.
Anear also shot in the Danish mixed team at stage four, Medellin, with individual qualifier for Mexico City 2015 Martin Damsbo.
Home soil is an asset, for sure, but with one match to use on the field, Hansen and Denmark look favourite to win the Mexico 2015 compound mixed team title on Saturday morning.
STORYLINE IN SHORT
The last time the home team won a mixed team match at the Archery World Cup Final was 2013, when the French compound pair staved off Italy in front of the Eiffel Tower. Three of six compound mixed team gold medals at the World Cup Final have gone to the host nation.
Since the mixed team event was introduced to the competition in 2009, though, the recurve win has always gone to the travelling challengers. A Korean World Archery Champion and world medallist is a big ask for two archers against which to buck the trend, but with a nearly 5,000-strong Mexican crowd behind Alejandra Valencia and Luiz Alvarez, who knows what’s possible…