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Korean ladies claim another gold

Korea maintained their remarkable record in women's team archery, winning a seventh consecutive Olympic gold at Lord's Cricket Ground on Sunday. 
Korea maintained their remarkable record in women's team archery, winning a seventh consecutive Olympic gold at Lord's Cricket Ground on Sunday.   They have triumphed at the competition in every Games since the team event was added to the schedule in Seoul in 1988, and extended that proud tradition at London 2012. LEE Sung Jin, KI Bo Bae and Choi Hyeonju defeated Chinese trio CHENG Ming, FANG Yuting and XU Jing 210-209 in wet and windy conditions.   It is the third time in a row China have finished in the silver medal position behind the Koreans, though none of the archers involved four years ago in Beijing are on duty in London.   The match was decided on the last arrow, when KI needed at least 9 to secure victory, and she held her nerve to hit the outer gold.   The bronze medal match was won by Japan, who defeated Russia 209-207 to claim the first women's archery medal in their history.   Read the review of all matches below.   Gold Medal Match   Korea (KOR/1) v China (CHN/7)   Korea is trying to remain unbeaten in all women's team event since it was introduced in the Olympic Games in Seoul 1988.   Difficult conditions under the rain for both teams in this gold medal match! Korea took a 2-point lead but with 49 points only against 47 for China.   A rainbow in the sky seemed to give ideas to the Chinese CHENG Ming, FANG Yuting and XU Jing. They scored 55 points and recovered one point, trailing by one only at the half-way mark (103-102).   The favourites LEE Sung Jin, CHOI Hyeonju and KI Bo Bae scored 54 points in the third end and the doors were open for China to take the lead for the first time of the match. But CHENG Ming, FANG Yuting and XU Jingcould only manage 52 and trailed by two with six arrows to go (156-154).   The gap remained with three arrows to go (184-182). Shooting first, China scored three 9s to conclude with 209 points. Korea's LEE scored 9, and CHOI then hit the 8-ring at her last arrow. This meant their teammate KI had to score no less than a 9 to win… The last arrow of the day was a 9 and the Olympic title remained Korean!   Bronze Medal Match   Japan (JPN/5) v Russia (RUS/6)   Unpredictable outcome for this match between the No. 5 and No. 6 teams of the competition, Japan and Russia…   Tension was felt at the start of the match, the two teams shooting 49 points each for a draw.   Japan's Miki KANIE, Kaori KAWANAKA and Ren HAYAKAWA improved a bit with 52 in the second end. But their opponents from Russia opened this end with three perfect shots and capitalised their assets taking a 4-point lead, 105-101.   KristinaTIMOFEEVA scored a 6 for Russia in the third end for 51 points. A dent was made, and their opponents from Japan rushed into it. With 54, they came back to one point behind (156-155).   There was a draw after three arrows in the final end (181-181)… Shooting first, Japan put lots of pressure with 9-9-10. Inna STEPANOVA scored an 8, followed by a 10 by TIMOFEEVA. As in quarterfinal, Ksenia PEROVA had a decisive arrow in her hands… She needed a perfect shot to tie. Any other arrow than a 10 would let the medal go away… This time, pressure was too high and the Russian could only manage an 8.   Japan clinched the Olympic bronze medal, 209-207, and the women's team podium will definitively be fully Asian!   Semifinals   Korea (KOR/1) vJapan (JPN/5)   After three 9s and two 8s for her team, Korea's KI Bo Bae found the 10 for the first time at the sixth arrow. With 53 points, her team led by one against Japan's 52 points.   Japan improved in the second end, scoring 55 despite a 7 at the sixth arrow. Korea also added 55 points to their score and kept the 1-point advantage (108-107).   The experienced Koreans LEE Sung Jin, CHOI Hyeonju and KI, favourites of both the team and individual events, made an important step towards victory in the third end. They scored four 10s in a row (followed by 9 and 8). With six more points than their opponents Miki KANIE, Kaori KAWANAKA and Ren HAYAKAWA in this end (57-51), the Koreans led by seven with one end to go (165-158).   The Japanese knew they could not come back and scored 48 points only in the final end. Team Korea scored two 10s and four 9s to clinch an indisputable victory 221-206. They thus remain unbeaten in the women's team Olympic event!   Russia (RUS/6) v China (CHN/7)   Russia prevented from an all-Asian representation in semifinals beating Chinese Taipei after a shoot-off in the previous round.   The best start in the second semifinal, however, was for the Chinese CHENG Ming, FANG Yuting and XU Jing, who took a 5-point advantage, 55-50, after one end.   Inna STEPANOVA, KristinaTIMOFEEVA and Ksenia PEROVA then scored four points better than in the opening end, but could not recover any single points as their contenders also shot 54.   Two tough shots by XU (6 and 7) in the third end allowed Russia to recover two points and come back three points behind (160-157).   The Chinese XU had another 6 in the first part of the final end and the score was tied at 183-183 with three arrows remaining for each team. The Russians could not do better than 9-8-7 to conclude and finished with a total of 207 points. As CHENG and FANG scored 9 each, China needed a 7 to clinch victory… A 7 came out of XU's bow for a repeat of the Beijing 2008 gold final, China versus Korea!   Quarterfinals   Korea (KOR/1) v Denmark (DEN/8)   Korea has won the women's team event at every Olympic Games since it was introduced in the Seoul 1988 Olympic Games. They start favourites as they qualified in 1st position but not with the dominance they have shown in previous Games.   KI Bo Bae and LEE Sung Jin qualified as the top 2 seeds but CHOI Hyeonju, who has been struggling with her technique during practice, pulled the team down closer to the chasing pack by ranking 21st, scoring 20 fewer points than her teammates.   Korea holds the 24-Arrow Match world and Olympic record with 231 points out of 240, a best mark they set at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.   The match started at the same time as a strong shower of rain that lasted for the first end. Korea made a very good start with three 10s, two 9s and an 8 in the first end. With 56 points, they led by ten already, against the Danish who could not make better than 46.   Carina CHRISTIANSEN, Louise LAURSEN and Maja JAGER repeated a 46 end. But they lost only one point, however, as their opponents LEE, CHOI and KI also faced some difficulties in the second end with 47 points.   The scores of the two teams improved in the third end compared to the second. The Danish ladies could even go one better than the Koreans (51-50) and recovered one point (153-143).   The scores got higher again for both teams, 53 for Korea and 52 for Denmark in the last end. The favourites clinched a comfortable victory, 206-195, against contenders having nothing to be ashamed of.   Japan (JPN/5) v Mexico (MEX/4)   Mexico have a young team but full of confidence. Mariana AVITIA, Aida ROMAN and Alejandra VALENCIA (MEX) qualified for the London 2012 Games at the last moment at the World Cup in Ogden, USA, in June. In the Ranking Round on Friday, they qualified 10th, 11th and 13th so being the most consistent team.   The Mexicans started with two perfect arrows by ROMAN and AVITIA, followed by an 8 and four 9s (55 points). As their opponents Miki KANIE, Kaori KAWANAKA and Ren HAYAKAWA could not do better than 52, the Central Americans took a 3-point advantage after one end.   KANIE opened the second end, but Japan followed with four 10s and a 9. With a strong 56 series, they Asian team reversed the situation and took the lead at 108-106.   In the third end, the Japanese managed three very nicely grouped arrows right in the centre and scored 55 points. With only 50, the contenders from Mexico lost five points and trailed by seven (163-156).   AVITIA, ROMAN and VALENCIA improved with 53, but the gap was too wide, and they finally lost by 10 points, as Japan scored 56 (219-209). Big disappointment for the No. 4 team!   Chinese Taipei (TPE/3) v Russia (RUS/6)   Except for the first arrow (an 8), Chinese Taipei's TAN Ya-Ting, LE Chien-Ying, LIN Chia-En hit the gold ring (10 or 9) each time in the first end for a 55-52 lead.   It was Team Russia's turn to score 55 points in the second end. This performance, added to a 7 (low) by Chinese Taipei's second shooter LE, allowed the Russian ladies to recover two points and come back at one point behind only (108-107).   In spite of a 7 by Kristina TIMOFEEVA at the fifth arrow in the third end, Russia scored 55 again to draw at 162-162, as Chinese Taipei scored 54.   Inna STEPANOVA, TIMOFEEVA and Ksenia PEROVA were put under pressure by their contenders at the beginning of the final end, who scored 9-10-9. With 8-8-9 only, the Russians were three points behind with only three arrows to go for each team (190-187).   However, Chinese Taipei let the door open for a come-back with 8-9-9 to finish this end. As STEPANOVA and TIMOFEEVA scored 9 and 10, PEROVA could tie the match with a 10. She did it! Shoot-off!   The first arrow by TAN was a perfect 10 right in the centre, while STEPANOVA hit the 9-ring. LE and LIN followed with an 8 each and TIMOFEEVA with a 10. Therefore, PEROVA had once again the decision in her hands, and 8 would be enough to win… The Russian lady stood pressure with a 9 for victory!   China (CHN/7) v United States (USA/2)   Team USA has experience on their side. Except Miranda LEEK, for whom this is her first Olympic Games, Khatuna LORIG has five Olympic participations and Jennifer NICHOLS three.   In the first end, China's CHENG Ming, FANG Yuting and XU Jing scored five 9s and an 8. Despite a 10-point first arrow by LEEK, the Americans suffered from a 7 at their fifth arrow (by LORIG) and trailed by one (53-52).   The two teams scored only 9s and 8s in the second end, the Chinese increasing their lead by two with 53 points against 51 for their opponents (106-103).   LORIG scored the second 10 of the match for USA at the second arrow of the third end. Their five other arrows were all 9s and they added 55 points to their total (158). China also had five 9s in this end but the fourth arrow, shot by CHENG, was an 8. With 53 points, the Asian representatives let two points go and had only a 1-point lead left (159).   Team USA again put all arrows in the yellow ring (five 9s and one 10), but this was not enough as China made a fantastic effort with 59 points in the final end (218-213).   1/8 Eliminations   India (IND/9) v Denmark (DEN/8)   The Indian ladies are the favourites of this match with 2011 World Cup Final runner-up Deepika KUMARI in their ranks. They are also the 2011 world championships' team silver medallists. However, the Danish will not be pushovers though, especially with Carina CHRISTIANSEN, who shot a national record of 663 in the ranking round on Friday.   The two teams started slowly with one 10 and one 7 each out of their first six arrows. India took the lead by one point, 52-51.   In the second end, the Danish ladies CHRISTIANSEN, Louise LAURSEN and Maja JAGER shot five arrows in the gold (three 10s and two 9s), with JAGER having an 8 at the sixth arrow. This allowed the European representatives to reverse the score and take a four-point lead (107-103), also due to a 6 by Chekrovolu SWURO in this end.   Another 6 by SWURO in the third end made her team lose one additional point, trailing by five with one end to go.   Hope came back for Deepika KUMARI, Bombayla Devi LAISHRAM and SWURO in the last end when they started with 9-10-10. They recovered four points and were only one behind after their opponents scored 8-9-8 (185-184). The Indians finished with 9-8-9. As CHRISTIANSEN and LAURSEN also scored 9 and 8, JAGER needed at least a 9 to win. What she did! Victory for Denmark 211-210.   Japan (JPN/5) v Ukraine (UKR/12)   Ukraine made a good start with 9-10-10, but Kateryna PALEKHA and Lidiia SICHENIKOVA then scored a 7 (low) and an 8 (high) in the second part of the first end. The Ukrainians took a one-point lead, however (53-52), taking advantage of a 6 by Miki KANIE in this end.   PALEKHA repeated a 7 at his team's fourth arrow of the second end. Even worse, her teammate SICHENIKOVA, under time pressure (three seconds remaining only when she released), scored a 3… With a 44-point end, Ukraine trailed by eight points at the half-way mark (105-97).   The poor Ukrainian ladies had lost composure! Three 7s and a 4 (together with 9 and 8) in the third end and they trailed by 19 points (158-139). As decision was made, they only had to use the final end as practice for the individual event.   Miki KANIE, Kaori KAWANAKA and Ren HAYAKAWA clinched the match even before the last arrow was shot and the final score was 207-192.   Great Britain (GBR/11) v Russia (RUS/6)   The home favourites only qualified in 11th from the ranking round, with six-time Olympian Alison WILLIAMSON (GBR) admitting to flaws in her technique.   Team GBR started with five arrows in the gold (10-9), only WILLIAMSON going out at her first arrow with a 7. They took an early lead 54-50, their opponents closing this end with a 7 by Kristina TIMOFEEVA and a 6 by Ksenia PEROVA.   With 52 points in the second end, Naomi FOLKARD, Amy OLIVER and WILLIAMSON lost three and saw their opponents Inna STEPANOVA, TIMOFEEVA and PEROVA come back dangerously (106-105).   Starting with 9-9-10 against 10-8-9, the British ladies doubled their lead at 134-132. FOLKARD then shot a 10 but was followed by a 6 by OLIVER. With 9 and 8, the Russians came back one point behind again before the last arrow of this end (150-149). PEROVA put pressure with a 10. WILLIAMSON responded with a 9 for a draw (159-159) with one end to go…   Three 9s for Great Britain (186) and 10-9-9 for Russia (187) to open the final end… Tension was high! The match turned to a nightmare for the local favourites when FOLKARD released a 4! "Game over" and victory went to Russia, 215-208.   China (CHN/7) v Italy (ITA/10)   Two former teammates could face each other if Italy beat China in the first round. Natalia VALEEVA (ITA) and Khatuna LORIG (USA) took bronze for the Unified Team (former Soviet Union countries) at Barcelona 1992.   After five arrows, Italy was leading by two (44-42), but Pia LIONETTI released a 3 at her team's sixth arrow. China led 50-47 after one end.   Jessica TOMASI also had a bad shot, a 4, at the second arrow of the second end. The Italian team trailed by six at the half-way mark (102-96).   Each team scored a 5 in the third end (XU Jing and LIONETTI). In spite of the bad shot, Italy managed to recover two points, taking advantage of a 47-point end only by their opponents (149-145).            World Archery Communication