Bangkok: India secured an Olympic quota in archery's women's recurve event on Thursday after Deepika Kumari and Ankita Bhakat reached the final of the 21st Asian Championships. The quota, however, was sealed by passage into the semi-finals. Deepika went on to win the gold medal after beating Ankita 6-0 in the final.
Three individual places were up for grabs from the continental qualifications and Indian archers, who are competing without a flag due to the national federation's suspension, made a big statement with top seed Deepika and sixth seed Ankita making it to the final. The quota will go to the Indian Olympic Committee, World Archery confirmed.
In the final, Kumari led from the start to finish to triumph in straight sets (6-0) with scores of 27-24, 27-26, 27-26.
Karma of Bhutan and Nguyet Do Thi Anh of Vietnam won the remaining two individual quota places at the Rajamangala National Stadium.
In the last-four, Bhakat beat Karma 6-2 while Kumari defeated Thi Anh by the same scoreline in four sets.
Deepika put up a flawless show to beat Nur Afisa Abdul Halil of Malaysia 7-2, Zahra Nemati (Iran) 6-4 and local girl Narisara Khunhiranchaiyo 6-2 to set up a semifinal clash against Nguyet.
"We wanted to give our best. But we were a little bit nervous earlier in the day. There was too much wind," Deepika said.
"We were desperate to win one more quota. We forgot about the past and everything. The whole team is very happy, at least we won one quota. This tournament has been very good show for us.
"Now we hope to earn a team quota from the Berlin stage of the World Cup next year," she added.
Bhakat, on the other hand, defeated Lam Shuk Ching Ada of Hong Kong 7-1, Nguyen Thi Phuong of Vietnam 6-0 and Anastassiya Bannova (Kazakhstan) 6-4 to set up a last-four battle against Karma.
(She competed as a neutral athlete due to the suspension of the Archery Association of India.) pic.twitter.com/nSmP9te8JW
— World Archery (@worldarchery) November 28, 2019
The Indian trio of Deepika, Ankita and Laishram Bombayla Devi competed under a neutral flag.
It is India's second Olympic quota place in archery after the men's recurve team of Tarundeep Rai, Atanu Das and Pravin Jadhav had secured the first in the World Championships earlier this year.
The Berlin stage of the 2020 World Cup is the last qualifying event in archery.
(With input from PTI)
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Updated Date: Jan 09, 2020 17:49:20 IST