Frangilli and Lundin leave Trädgårdsföreningen Park as World Champions
Morgan Lundin (SWE) - Photos © Dean Alberga
On Saturday Trädgårdsföreningen Park (Göteborg) welcomed the individual finals of the Field Archery World Championships. Starting with the semi finals on four different targets (3 arrows per target), the archers then finished on four new targets in the matches for gold or bronze. The first title awarded today went to Michele Frangilli of Italy, 2005 World Games winner and 2002 World Champion.
Starting with the Recurve Men category, today’s finals were followed by a great number of cheering spectators in the beautiful and friendly park of Trädgårdsföreningen right in the heart of the City of Göteborg. In a very tight match (58-57) the defending champion Sebastian Rohrberg of Germany had to leave victory to his Italian opponent this time, in a remake of 2002 gold final.
Frangilli’s victory is nothing but logic, as he has been leading this week’s competition all the way from the very beginning with a great margin over all other male Recurve competitors. The bronze medal of this category went to Vic Wunderle who added a medal to his quiver – after the one won yesterday with the USA team – over Belgium Jean-Michel Piquet (58-51).
The four finalists in this category were very close to each other in the semi-finals. While local Elin Kattstrom was shooting 50 in her first match, Sophie Dodemont (FRA), Naomi Folkard (GBR) and Dolores Cekada (SLO) were all scoring 51 points. It was sufficient for the French archer to go through to the gold final, but in the other match between Folkard and Cekada, a shoot-off arrow was needed to decide the winner. Shooting the highest possible score with her additional arrow, the Slovenian lady won the right to fight for the world title – Folkard shooting a 4.
In the gold final, Sophie Dodemont lost all illusion when she shot on the wrong target (the one for barebow!) at the third target. The score of this arrow being lost, it was impossible for her to recover with the few arrows remaining. She therefore left the victory and gold medal to Slovenian Dolores Cekada. In the match for bronze, all British fans were supporting their archer, hoping she would finally offer them a first and only medal in these championships… She did after defeating Swedish Elin Kattstrom by 53-49. This certainly gave a little relief to the organizers of the next Field World Championships in Wales in 2008.
The Compound Men archers showed once again what perfect shooting is! In the semi-finals both Morgan Lundin (SWE) and Dave Cousins (USA) shot a perfect 60 on their four targets. John Dudley (USA) and Axel Langweige (GER) could only bow before the superiority of their opponents and fought against each other for the bronze medal. The American proved he was the strongest of the two and won the bronze medal in a close match 59 to 58, offering a new medal to his country’s harvest.
The very last shots of the competition were also the most exciting ones, thanks to Dave Cousins and Morgan Lundin, two of the greatest archers of the time. The American showman put pressure on his Swedish rival shooting close to perfection (59), only shooting a 4 with his very last arrow. But it was without counting on the experience of the Swedish World Games Champion: supported by a great number of local fans. Lundin once again proved he knew how to hold his nerves and shot 12 perfect arrows and won another world title to add to his collection.
The Compound Women gold medal match needed a shoot-off to decide its winner between Gladys Willems of Belgium and Silke Hoettecke of Germany (56-56). After a perfect additional arrow while her opponent scored a 4, the German lady fell in tears realizing she had become the new World Champion of her category.
The American Jamie Van Natta, recent new World Record holder in Target Archery, gave another medal to her country. In a 100% American match for bronze, Van Natta achieved an excellent 59 round upsetting her teammate Jahna Davis by one little point.
It was an Italian feast in Göteborg today, with two "Azzurri" on the Barebow Men’s podium, Giuseppe Seimandi in gold and Sergio Massimo Cassiani in bronze. The two of them were first opposed in the semi-finals, a match that Seimandi won by 56-52. Cassiani was then facing Slovenian Miha Kosec whom he upset 51-48.
The gold medal match opposed Seimandi to Swedish Mattias Larsson. Although cheered up by many local fans, Larsson could do nothing but leave victory to his opponent by only one point (50-51) and leave “his” championships with the silver medal.
In this category the ranking after the eliminations – Linhart (AUT), Pennacchi (ITA), Gauthé (FRA), and Jentges (GER) - was totally changed. First seed Reingild Linhart could not shoot over 44 and was first defeated by Monika Jentges in the semi-final and then by Christine Gauthé in the bronze medal match. The favourite after the qualification and elimination rounds, she left Göteborg with no medal at all as she and her teammates were also ranked fourth in yesterday’s team event.
Christine Gauthé from France won the bronze and Monika Jentges and Luciana Pennacchi were left to shoot for gold. The Italian lady proved to be in her best form shooting 53 and 47 today. For her part, after upsetting Linhart in the semi-final, the German archer Monika Jentges could not hold her nerves in the gold final shooting a low 41 score. But there is no doubt she is happy with her 2006 Field Championships, as she brought back home two silver medals (team and individual).
Ludivine Maitre Wicki