Steve Prowse wins third visually impaired world title in ’s-Hertogenbosch

Great Britain’s Steve Prowse beat Italian archer Giovanni Vaccaro, 6-2, to secure gold and his third visually impaired 2/3 world title at the 2019 World Archery Para Championships in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands.

“It was a bit shaky for a couple of arrows. I think the old nerves kicked a bit on the last two. And then it came back again, so I was chuffed, you know. It was good,” said Steve.

The 60-year-old opened the match with 24 points against Vaccaro’s 19 to take an early 2-0 lead, subsequently extending his advantage to 4-0. Vaccaro landed a pair of 10s and a six to take the third by a point.

In the fourth set, Giovanni shot first. He shot six, seven and an eight; Steve landed a nine, seven and a final 10 to secure the title.

“Giovanni’s shooting well. He pushed Phil [Tranter], Nick [Thomas] and myself – it’s all getting very close, which is good,” he said.

Steve won his first visually impaired world title in 2007 in Cheongju, Korea when the para competition was run by the International Paralympic Committee. His second title came four years ago in Donaueschingen, Germany, where he beat British teammate Peter Price to the gold.

And his third in ’s-Hertogenbosch goes hand-in-hand with another reason to celebrate.

“We’ve got a new grandchild coming tomorrow. We’re going back tonight and straight to the hospital in the morning to hopefully see the new grandchild,” said Steve, proud.

The bronze medal match saw Nicholas Thomas beating his teammate Phillip Tranter in straight sets, 6-0.

“At the moment it means everything because it’s what I’ve been training for and working and sacrificing things at home. I’m a European bronze medallist, so the feeling of translating from a bronze at the Euros to sustaining a gold at the worlds is massive. Is just a reward for the hard work,” said Nicholas.

The visually impaired 1 final saw new para world record holder Ruben Vanhollebeke of Belgium take gold over Christos Misos of Cyprus, 6-0.

The 42-year-old scored a pair of 18s and a 20 over Misos’ 14, 4 and 10 to secure his first world title.

“I can’t explain it. It’s unbelievable. It’s something I’ve worked for 15 years now and it’s finally worked for me. I’m really, really happy. The cherry on the cake,” said Ruben.

An emotional Daniel Martin of Spain beat Jordi Casellas Albiol of Andorra, 7-3, to the bronze medal in the division.

“To be honest, I didn’t expect this. It’s indescribable what I’m feeling right now. this is my first international competition. It’s a great feeling,” said Daniel, crying. “This is for my family, my friends and my team.”

The 2019 Hyundai World Archery Championships take place on 10-16 June and World Archery Para Championships on 3-9 June in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands.