Denmark and Turkey win first European titles
In the compound men’s team competition, Denmark faced off against Russia in a high-quality match that went down to the wire.
After two eights from Denmark in the first end, Russia had a four point lead – but Denmark soon dialled in, and drilled 12-straight tens in a row from the start of the second volley to tie the score going into the last.
Both teams shot 58 in the fourth to force the tie break, and Russia faltered, shooting 9-8-9 to the Danes’ 10-9-10.
“I just had to aim for the X and I try to make the closest to centre just to be sure that if we were tied we had one close,” said Stephan Hansen.
The Danish men hadn’t had a great start to the season in Shanghai, by their standards – but have kept the team focused.
“Shanghai wasn’t actually that bad. It was just those margins that you’re sometimes working on,” said Martin Damsbo. “This time we were just lucky enough, good enough to keep this team on and just go on the way. Same recipe as always, going for the Xs and see how far it takes us. Running on adrenaline!”
The French men’s team, who won this event in Amsterdam in 2012, seemed happy with bronze after beating a lacklustre Spain, 233-225.
“We were a little sad about the semis. We shot a great 235 against Russia, they shot 237. It was a great match and we wanted to enjoy the field here, shot great and that’s all we have done,” said world number eight Sebastian Peineau.
“There’s a lot of attention on the recurve because we have the Olympics this year, but with the coach, the team, the guys, the girls, everyone supports each other. We had a great year, a great season, winning the gold in mixed in Shanghai and then bronze in Medellin, it’s been a good year so far,” he concluded.
Turkey, who took the bronze medal in 2014, went two better by beating defending champions Russia by two points, 219-217.
Russia took a four point lead after a shaky first end for Turkey, but struggled to find the 10 ring in the next couple of ends, leaking a seven and an eight in the last end to hand their opponents the prize, adding further gold to a great week for Turkish archery.
Yesim Bostan was proud afterwards: “We believed in ourselves as a team. I wasn’t nervous but I think she [Evrim Saglam] was excited! We shot for our national anthem and our flag. It’s been a great week!”
The Russian women, rarely far from the podium in international events, were devastated.
“We can’t believe this score, we had some bad shots. That’s all. We just couldn’t find our shooting,” said Albina Loginova.
“We are always expecting first place. We’re always going for the gold. We have two weeks to prepare for Antalya, to get our heads together and shoot again like we know we can shoot, as there will be many teams and it will be difficult,” concluded Albina.
In the bronze medal match, the Netherlands easily defeated Great Britain 225-217, despite some noisy home crowd support.
Andrea Gales of Great Britain was sanguine: “We found an amazing atmosphere. The crowd really got behind us! This was a bit of a bonus for us because we were ranked 10, we weren’t expected to be here but to get here in front of our home crowd was a dream.”