AAI trying to revive National Ranking tournament

With an aim to groom young archers for the 2028 and 2032 Olympics, the Archery Association of India is trying to revive the National Ranking tournaments and provide more competitions to up-and-coming talent.

Medal matches are held on this podium at the National archery championship in Jamshedpur. - SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

With an aim to groom young archers for the 2028 and 2032 Olympics, the Archery Association of India (AAI) is trying to revive the National Ranking tournaments and provide more competitions to the up-and-coming talent.

The AAI has a goal of making youngsters war-ready by exposing them to tournaments round the year.

“Now the cadet archers are getting only one event a year. There is an effort to restart the National ranking tournaments so that they get more events. More exposure to the domestic circuit will help us identify more new faces,” High Performance Director Sanjeeva Singh told Sportstar on the sidelines of the National championships, which would switch to recurve competitions from Friday.

The AAI is serious about enabling the archers to win medals at the Olympics.

“India has been knocking on the doors of the Olympics for a long time. The next target for us is reaching the semifinals, which are medal matches. In the World Championships, we need to go one step up as we have not won a gold medal yet,” said Sanjeeva, an Arjuna and Dronacharya award winner.

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“Sports science is going to play a key role. We have already started using it. We are focusing on lower heart rate, better structure (perfect T-structure which ensures better transfer of power on the arrows), high draw strength and good height to identify and groom talent.

“Advanced countries like [South] Korea, Germany, Italy and Turkey are focusing on bio-mechanics and using different software to ensure that every time an archer shoots, the body angle remains correct and the scoring is optimised. If angles change, then it impacts the shots.”

The AAI is trying to put in place podium settings for top domestic events, including the National Championships here. 

“You see many events like this in [South] Korea. Such a setting creates the ambience of a big event. When archers shoot on a podium in domestic competitions, they don’t get overawed at bigger international events,” said Sanjeeva.

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