Tokyo: World No.1 India’s Deepika Kumari’s Tokyo Olympics campaign came to a disappointing end as she lost her quarterfinal to top-seed An San of South Korea 0-6 at the Yumenoshima Park Archery Field on Friday.
The Korean was on top of her game as she started off with a perfect set of three 10s compared to Deepika’s 7 and two 10s. In the second set, the Indian began with 10 while An shot a 9 but Deepika couldn’t keep her momentum to hitting just 7. An hit a 10 in her second arrow before Deepika faltered in her next two attempts to extend her lead to 4-0.
Required to win the third set to stay alive in the match, Deepika hit 7, 8, 9 in her three attempts against the 20-year-old Korean’s one 8 and two 9s to bow out. This was Deepika’s maiden Olympics quarterfinal appearance in the women’s individual event in three attempts. Deepika’s previous Olympics appearances were in 2012 (London Olympics) and in the 2016 Rio Games.
Earlier, Deepika, India’s sole female archer at the Tokyo Olympics, advanced to the quarterfinals beating Ksenia Perova (ROC). Tied 5-5 at the end of the fifth round, the Indian shot a perfect 10 against Perova’s 7 in the shoot-off.
The shoot-off that sealed the deal for Deepika Kumari 👏🏹
The #IND archer won 6-5 against ROC's Ksenia Perova in the women's individual recurve event, booking a quarter-final berth! 😍#Tokyo2020 | #UnitedByEmotion | #StrongerTogether | #BestOfTokyo @Imdeepikak pic.twitter.com/8kDrvyCXED
— #Tokyo2020 for India (@Tokyo2020hi) July 30, 2021
Both archers struggled for consistency initially on a day that was particularly in overcast conditions. Kumari only got four 10s out of 15 arrows, while Perova only got two. Deepika shot 9, 10, 9 to take first-round against Perova’s 9, 9, 7. The ROC archer came back strongly to win 27-26 with a 10 in her final arrow in the second levelling the score.
Deepika pulled off well to take the lead once again in the third set, scoring 28 (10, 9, 9) while Perova managed to shot three 9s for 27. Leading 5-3 at the end of the fourth round, Deepika needed a win to seal the deal but a disappointing 7 in the first arrow of the fifth round cost the Indian a straight win.
Meanwhile, An took the individual gold — her third at Tokyo Olympics after grabbing the yellow metal in the mixed team and women’s team events. ROC’s Elina Osipova took silver and Italian Lucilla Boari bagged bronze.
The only Indian left in the sport at the Tokyo Olympics is Deepika’s husband Atanu Das who will be facing Takaharu Furukawa for a place in the men’s individual recurve quarterfinals.