National archery championships: Delhi, MP reign supreme

Abhishek Verma starred in Delhi's win over Andhra Pradesh in the compound men's event final at the National archery championships, while Madhya Pradesh beat Punjab to bag the women's title.

Compound men's team champion Delhi

The victorious Delhi compound men's team (from left, Aman Saini, Kawalpreet Singh, Abhishek Verma and Ritik Chahal).   -  Special Arrangement

Seasoned archer Abhishek Verma overcame the odds of travelling across several time zones and contrasting weather conditions to help Delhi beat a youthful Andhra Pradesh side 230-227 in the final and win the compound men's team title in the 40th NTPC National archery championships at the Tata Archery Academy campus here on Tuesday.

Abhishek, who claimed a mixed team silver medal with V. Jyothi Surekha in the World championships in Yankton and competed in the World Cup Final in the same USA city before returning home on October 1, shot well to enable Delhi, the last edition's silver medallist, to come from behind and claim the crown.

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Delhi, also comprising Aman Saini and Ritik Chahal, trailed 56-59 after the opening end as the Andhra trio of Kunderu Venkatadri, Manoj Kumar and Thirumu Ganesh Mani Ratnam gave a tough fight.

Encouraged by fourth member Kawalpreet Singh, Delhi raised its game with a perfect score of 60 in the next to draw parity (116-116) before winning the third and fourth.

“I managed this performance despite jet lag and the hugely different weather conditions, it was cold in the USA and it's hot here. We slipped a bit, but recovered well,” said Abhishek.

In the women's final, Madhya Pradesh, consisting of Ragini Marko, Muskan Kirar and Srishti Singh, beat Punjab in a closely-contested final 232-230 to bag the team championship.

Abhishek and Jyothi topped the individual ranking rounds, collecting 708 and 704 points respectively. In fact, Jyothi was the only woman to go past the 700-mark. Ten male archers breached the 700 mark.

The results:

Compound Team:

Men: Final: Delhi bt Andhra Pradesh 230-227; Third place: Maharashtra bt Haryana 232-229

Women: Final: Madhya Pradesh bt Punjab 232-230; Third place: All India Police bt Jharkhand 226-223


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