Sjef van den Berg wins 1st world title in Yankton
Sjef van den Berg beat Japan’s Daisuke Tomatsu from Japan to win his first ever individual indoor world title just after collecting a team gold medal with the Dutch recurve men’s squad at the 2018 World Archery Indoor Championships in Yankton, USA.
“I feel really great. I walk away with not only two medals but two gold medals, so that’s pretty much the best you can do at the world indoors and I’m super happy with that,” said Sjef.
Sjef trailed in the match after shooting 28 points for his first set to his opponent’s 29.
He then proceeded to land nine consecutive perfect 10s to take the match six set points to 17-year-old Tomatsu’s two.
“The first arrow went into the nine on the right and I also aimed nine on the right, so that made sense to me, then I shot a good 10 and a left nine, which I didn’t completely understand. So I just aimed in the middle and went for it,” explained Sjef.
“I had a really good week here in Yankton. I had a good qualification and after that, the matches were all great, so the whole week has been one big up for me. I’m really happy with how it went.”
Sjef scored 598 points for the 60-arrow 18-metre recurve ranking round. He then beat Italy’s Massimiliano Mandia, 6-2, and Taylor Worth from Australia, 7-3, before making the finals against his world indoor debutant opponent from Japan.
Sjef, with teammates Rick van den Ven and recently-crowned Indoor Archery World Cup Champion Steve Wijler, defeated Taylor Worth, Ryan Tyack and Astin Darcy from Australia, five set points to one, to collect the Netherlands’ first ever recurve team indoor title.
“We came here with a lot of confidence. At first, we thought about getting into the medals and it’s awesome to do it. To get the gold is really impressive,” said Wijler.
The Dutch men landed only three of their 18 arrows outside of the 10-ring.
“It was a really great match for us; we put on a great shoot at the start and it worked for us,” added Rick.
The Ukrainian recurve men’s team secured bronze ahead of Russia, 5-1.
The 2018 World Archery Indoor Championships takes place in Yankton, USA on 14-19 February.