Archery World Cup: Deepika, Atanu shoot gold; India finishes with four medals

Deepika claimed her career's third individual World Cup gold to add to the team's triumph, while her husband Atanu grabbed his first-ever World Cup individual medal.

Atanu Das and Deepika Kumari bagged two individual gold medals in the Archery World Cup. (File Photo)   -  BISWARANJAN ROUT

It was a family affair for Atanu Das and his wife Deepika Kumari as they won the men and women individual recurve gold medals respectively in the Archery World Cup Stage 1 in Guatemala City on April 25.

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Atanu beat Daniel Castro of Spain 6-4 while his better half defeated Mackenzie Brown of the USA 6-5 (9-9), via tie-breaker, in the individual gold medal matches.

Atanu, who was trailing 4-2 in the third set, drew parity in the fourth set and claimed victory in the fifth over Castro.

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“It feels amazing. Dreams are coming true. I’ve worked so hard for so many years, and now this is paying off,” Atanu told www.worldarchery.org.

After taking a 2-0 lead, Deepika saw Mackenzie equalize in the third set. The Indian regained her lead before the American made it 5-5 to force a tie-breaker.

Deepika’s shot was closer to the centre than her opponent’s as the two scored a nine each. “It has been a long time since I shot in the finals. It feels great and, at the same time, I’m happy and nervous. It gives me confidence and pushes me to give better performances,” said Deepika.

It was Atanu’s first gold medal in the event, while it was Deepika’s third individual gold in a World Cup.

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Deepika, who earlier claimed the women’s team gold with Ankita Bhakat and Komalika Bari, finished with two gold medals. It was her fourth team title.

Deepika won her previous individual gold medals in 2012 (China) and 2018 (USA). Till date, she has collected 32 medals, including eight gold, 16 silver and eight bronze, in World Cups and World Cup Finals.

Deepika was part of all five gold winning women recurve teams in 2011 (China), 2013 (Colombia and Poland), 2014 (Poland ) and 2021 (Guatemala).

Atanu grabbed two medals as well, a mixed team bronze with Ankita along with his individual gold.

Indian recurve archers finished with three gold and one bronze medal to boost their morale ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.