China, Russia, Italy take recurve team titles in Beijing
China and Russia took the first two big awards at the 2017 World Archery Para Championships in Beijing, taking the men’s and women’s recurve open team titles, respectively, in the arena built in the shadow of the velodrome at the host para sport complex.
On home turf, the Chinese’s women defended the title they won in Donaueschingen in 2015.
Russia found a gear in the third set with an end of 54, but China shot 55 points in the fourth to clinch the match. Team captain – both in Beijing and back in 2015 – Wu Chunyan said afterwards: “To win gold in our country is what we wanted, so this is very good.”
Cai Geya added: “It’s one team. We are together and we worked with our coach to come through and win.”
The Russian camp weren't upset for long, taking the men’s team title 6-2 with strong, consistent shooting that saw both sides show quality. Just a couple of loose arrows from Kevin Mather and Michael Lukow were enough to put the US out of contention.
Afterwards, the US third Timothy Palumbo said: “I was really relaxed, trying not to look at what they were shooting. It's not quite as good as gold, but we're happy.”
“It was an incredible feeling being out there on the World Championships field,” added Mather, making his debut in Beijing. “We have a great team with the right coaches and chemistry and we know the hard work and practice ahead of us if we want to win gold.”
Italy beat Iran in the women’s team bronze medal match, in a shoot-off.
The Iranian team ran out of time after its second archer, Zahra Delkosh, was carded for a technical mistake.
Poland took the men's bronze team medal, beating Brazil, 6-0.
“The feeling is great. I've finished fourth before and it wasn't nearly as good. Now we get to be on the medal stand. We are members in history, now, forever,” said Pawel Daleszynski.
“My teammates and I are very happy because for once our arrows were straight, and they kept being straight. To do this in the championships, we are so proud.”
In the mixed team recurve event, Italy took gold against Brazil, 6-0, and Russia beat Iran for the bronze.
The 2017 World Archery Para Championships run 12-17 September in Beijing, China.