Asian Games gold medallist Abhishek Verma along with world No 3 women’s compound archer Jyothi Surekha Vennam clinched the compound mixed team gold for India at Stage 3 of the Archery World Cup 2022 in Paris, France, on Saturday.
Abhishek and Jyothi defeated the local pair of Sophie Dodemont and Jean Philippe Boulch 152-149 in the compound mixed team final to win India’s first gold medal at the tournament.
The Indian pair of Abhishek and Jyothi got off to a perfect start against Sophie and Jean and took a 40-37 lead in the first set. However, the French pair cut the Indian lead and trailed 76-75 at the halfway stage.
The trend continued as Abhishek and Jyothi kept the slender one-point lead intact at the end of the third set. In the final set, the experienced Abhishek struck a perfect 10 with his first arrow while the French pair hit the 9s and 8. Jyothi then responded with the 9s to help India pocket the gold medal.
Notably, this was Abhishek’s third Archery World Cup gold medal this season. He had won the men’s compound team events in Turkey and South Korea early in the year.
En route to the mixed compound finals, Abhishek and Jyothi defeated Estonia in the semi-finals after getting the better of El Salvador in the quarter-finals.
Later in the day, Jyothi Surekha Vennam and Sophie Dodemont also met in the compound women’s individual semi-final which the Indian won 147-145. However, Jyothi, who was making her first international appearance this year, lost to world No. 6 Ella Gibson of Great Britain in the final.
Both archers were tied at 148 each after the last set. But, Jyothi lost the shoot-off and settled for silver.
Following the win in the mixed compound team event, India are placed second on the Archery World Cup 2022 medals table with four gold, two silver and three bronze medals. South Korea, with six gold medals, are on top while Great Britain are third with four gold medals, two silver and one bronze.
The women’s recurve archery team of Deepika Kumari, Ankita Bhakat and Simranjeet Kaur will play in the gold medal match against Chinese Taipei on Sunday.