Madrid, August 25
Komalika Bari defeated higher-ranked Sonoda Waka of Japan in a one-sided final to become the recurve cadet world champion and, earning India’s second gold on the final day of the World Archery Youth Championships. Jamshedpur-born Komalika, a cadet of Tata Archery Academy, cruised to a 4-0 lead before wrapping it up 7-3.
The 17-year-old thus became India’s second recurve cadet (U-18) world champion after Deepika Kumari won the title in 2009. This was also India’s fourth individual world championships title after Deepika (cadet and junior) and Palton Hansda (compound junior in 2006).
India concluded their campaign with two gold and one bronze in their last event before the Indian national association’s suspension by the sport’s global governing body, World Archery, comes into effect. Henceforth, no Indian archer will be able to represent the country till the suspension is lifted.
Komalika made her senior debut this year and was a member of the World Championships team in the Netherlands in June.
India also won gold in the compound junior mixed pair event on Saturday and bronze in the compound junior men’s team event on Friday. Komalika shot near perfect scores of 29 out of 30 thrice in the five-setter. Starting off with two perfect 10s, Komalika clinched the first set 29-26 as she again shot 29 to make it 4-0.
The only blip was an eight in the fourth set as the Japanese pulled one back (26-28) after drawing the third set 28-28. Sonoda needed to win the fifth set to force a shoot-off but Komalika showed nerves of steel to shoot 29 and confirm the gold medal. — PTI
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