Perova’s 9-year wait for individual title over
Ksenia Perova took the first major individual title of her career in Antalya in dramatic style.
A runner up at the stage in 2016 and in the arena for a final in Shanghai to open the season, her recent strong consistent form has been a key factor in the Russian women’s team biggest gongs – an Olympic team silver in Rio and the team World Archery Championship title from Copenhagen.
However, she had never taken down a big individual gold medal, and was up against the talented, but erratic, Lin Shih-Chia of Chinese Taipei in Antalya.
The archers split the first two solid sets; in the third, Lin shipped a six on the second arrow, but recovered with a strong ten to save the set and split the points for 3-0. Perova dug deep and produced a 29 to take the fourth, but shot eights in the fifth to force the only shoot-off of the weekend.
The Chinese Taipei athlete had survived three unscathed on her way to the final, but her luck had run out; her weak nine in reply to Perova’s strong nine was not enough, and a distraught Lin had to settle for silver at another major final – by about two centimetres - and deny Chinese Taipei a sweep of golds on the weekend.
An emotional Perova was overjoyed: “in nine years of participating in World Archery events, I’m just so happy and glad, and full of emotion right now.”
“When I shot the nine I wasn’t happy, because I thought I would need a ten to win against her. But I had a little hope. When she shot the nine and it was further away I felt blessed.”
“I am planning to shoot until Tokyo for sure. After that, we’ll see.”
In the women’s bronze medal match, Le Chien-Ying won easily, burying Ana Maria Rendon 6-0 in a one-sided contest.
The second stage of the 2017 Hyundai Archery World Cup runs 6 to 11 June in Antalya, Turkey.