Antalya 2017: 10 things you need to know
Antalya marks stage two of a four-stop world tour that’s already been to Shanghai and will visit both Salt Lake City and, finally, Berlin – before the top seven athletes in each category are invited to the Hyundai Archery World Cup Final in Rome, Italy at the start of September.
Here’s what you need to know before competition arrows fly in Turkey…
1. Ranking leaders
Winners in Shanghai and now leaders of the Hyundai Archery World Cup rankings, Steve Wijler, Ki Bo Bae, Stephan Hansen and Sara Lopez have an early stake in qualification for the circuit finale, this year in Rome.
Over the full four-stage world tour, one win is not quite enough – and though just Lopez and Hansen of the quartet are in Antalya, all four will need to do more over the season to secure an invitation to the Hyundai Archery World Cup Final.
2. Arrow average
Braden Gellenthien has the highest average arrow score over the preceding 24 months on the compound field, with 9.782, ahead of USA teammate Bridger Deaton on 9.756. (Lopez, of course, is the top woman, with 9.69, tied with Sergio Pagni and Omid Taheri.)
Another States man leads the recurve average arrow rankings in Antalya. Four-time Hyundai Archery World Cup Champion Brady Ellison median score sits at 9.41, Atanu Das trails slightly on 9.39 – while, somewhat surprisingly perhaps, the third-placed recurver is Italian Max Mandia.
The top two recurve women on average in Antalya?
3. Breaking point?
Sara Lopez has won five Hyundai Archery World Cup stages and 28 world-level matches in a row arriving at stage two of the 2017 world tour.
She did, however, lose to world number two and rival Sarah Sonnichsen in the final of the Conquest Cup, an invitational tournament held in Istanbul a week prior to the event in Antalya. If anyone is primed to break Lopez historical run, it’s Denmark’s Sonnichsen.
4. Bold predictions
Mete Gazoz climbs podium. The 17-year-old Turkish archer beat Lee Seungyun, from Korea, who happened to win in Antalya in 2016, at the recent Conquest Cup in Istanbul. After making his first Olympic Games in Rio and coming second at the European Championships the same year, Gazoz is on the rise.
Georgian women win gold. Khatuna Narimanidze, one of our favourite international archers for her competitive success while administrating the Georgian federation as well, and worlds runner-up Kristine Esebua have a new supporting cast. The recurve women’s team title in Antalya is ripe for the taking.
5. Flying the flag
Runner-up at the Hyundai Archery World Cup Final in 2016, Seppie Cilliers travelled to Shanghai as part of a South African team with intention. His opening event of the season didn’t go well, as he lost in the first round – but he, alone, has travelled to Antalya with the hope of gaining points in a diminished compound men’s field.
Aida Roman, from Mexico, too is alone in Antalya. The 2014 Archery World Cup Final winner picked up a single ranking point for making the top-32 in Shanghai.
6. Unruh on form
Rio 2016 Olympic silver medallist Lisa Unruh, from Germany, will make her season debut in Antalya. Rumour has it that the recurve woman has been shooting well recently, setting a new national record at home.
7. Keep an eye on…
Seb Peineau: Back on the French team after a long indoor season spent recovering from injury, the reigning World Archery Indoor Champion joins a stacked compound men’s squad – which also boasts former world number one PJ Deloche. It wouldn’t be a stretch to think he struggles at his first major back, but what if doesn’t?
Divya Dhayal: 15-year-old Indian compound archer who finished sixth in Shanghai. Already making waves in domestic competition, it’s a matter of when – not if – Divya finds success on the international circuit.
Marcus D’Almeida: In 2014 – well before the Olympics – Brazilian Marcus had two big silver medals, first at the Youth Olympic Games and then at the Archery World Cup Final. Post-Rio, where he admitted to being completely worn out by expectation and being part of the host nation build-up, where’s his level?
8. One hit wonder?
Kazakhstan beat the Korean men in an incredible recurve team final at stage one in Shanghai, which was ultimately decided in a shoot-off. With Korea absent from Antalya – reeling from an underwhelming opening tournament, the Korean squad will return in Salt Lake City – Kazakhstan has the perfect opportunity to prove that its first world archery podium was no fluke.
9. 13 x #1
Thirteen archers shooting in Antalya have been ranked world number one at some point in their careers: Dejan Sitar, Marco Galiazzo, Natalia Erdynieva, PJ Deloche, Seb Peineau, Sergio Pagni, Braden Gellenthien, Deepika Kumari, Stephan Hansen, Reo Wilde, Brady Ellison, Sara Lopez and Alberto Simonelli (in the para rankings).
Hansen, Lopez and Simonelli are all reigning world number ones.
Last year’s gold medallists in Antalya:
- SARA LOPEZ – compound woman
- EVREN CAGIRAN – compound man
- CHOI MISUN – recurve woman
- LEE SEUNGYUN – recurve man
The second stage of the 2017 Hyundai Archery World Cup runs 6 to 11 June in Antalya, Turkey.