Italy’s Elisa Roner roars into first final four in Antalya

Elisa Roner

Elisa Roner’s meteoric rise rolls on as the Italian rubber-stamped her best-ever result at the Hyundai Archery World Cup in Antalya, Türkiye.

The 21-year-old, who claimed a breakout victory in February’s Indoor Archery World Series Finals, showed superb form in her first outdoor competition of the season, battling up from the 18th seed to make her first career final four alongside seven-time circuit champion Sara Lopez, reigning world number one Ella Gibson and two-time world championship medallist, Jyothi Surekha Vennam.

Mike Schloesser, the defending title holder on the tour, headlines the compound men’s semifinal line-up, alongside Jozef Bosansky, and two more arena debutants in Sawyer Sullivan and Juwaidi Mazuki.

In the closing moments of Thursday afternoon’s elimination session, Roner’s competition looked over. She was a point down to French veteran Sophie Dodemont with three arrows to shoot in their quarterfinal – and looked unlikely to improve upon her previous best of fifth place from six career outings on the Hyundai Archery World Cup.

But Dodemont sprayed three wide nines in the last end – while Roner nailed three 10s, winning the match and booking a semifinal berth.

It feels unreal, said an emotional Roner, who was crying at the target. I always struggle with the outdoor season while I love indoor. It’s crazy for me to be in a semifinal on the World Cup. I really hoped to be as good outdoors as good as I am indoors.


Roner’s biggest challenge yet will come when she faces reigning circuit champion Sara Lopez in Saturday’s semifinals.

The Colombian legend survived a quarterfinal scare of her own, needing a 10 in a tiebreaker to beat Luxembourg’s Mariya Shkolna.

India’s Jyothi Surekha Vennam, who shot a stunning 713 to match the current 72-arrow 50-metre world record (owned by Lopez) and top qualifying, was untouchable in eliminations and claimed four convincing victories as she stormed through the bracket.

Jyothi downed Denmark’s Tanja Gellenthein, 147-142, in the quarterfinals to set up a meeting with British world number one Ella Gibson. 

I’m very excited and looking forward to Saturday,” Jyothi said. The wind was a little bit tricky. I was struggling in the initial matches, but in the last one I shot better and I was happy with my shooting.

Standing behind Vennam during matchplay? Former Italian international Sergio Pagni, who’s coaching for India in 2023.

After dominating the international circuit in 2022, winning three of three stages in which she competed and finishing runner-up at the Hyundai Archery World Cup Final, Ella Gibson looks less than invincible in 2023. Three of her wins this afternoon came by a margin of two points or fewer and the tightest was a 146-145 triumph over Mexico’s Andrea Becerra, setting up a mouthwatering semifinal meeting with Jyothi on Saturday.

Gibson Jyothi

The compound men’s bracket was blown wide open when India’s Ojas Pravin Deotale upset top seed Mathias Fullerton in a third-round shoot-off.

Malysia’s Juwaidi Mazuki, meanwhile, was dropping his opponent with a clean 150-point match on the target next door. Faced with Deotale in the quarterfinals, Mazuki shot another perfect 15 arrows – to book his first appearance in the arena on the international circuit.

Mazuki, who took some time off from the sport during the pandemic, put five points on his own Malaysian national record during qualifying in Antalya. His 714, though, was only good enough for the eighth seed then – indicative of the incredible level currently needed to compete at a world-class level.

The 32-year-old will face Slovakia’s Jozef Bosansky on Saturday, who held his nerve to find a 10 in a quarterfinal tiebreak to get past Rajat Chauhan of India.

Chauhan and Deotale’s compatriot Prathamesh Samadhan Jawkar was the third Indian archer to make the last eight but narrowly lose out on a spot in the final four, having run Mike Schloesser all the way in a 147-145 quarterfinal defeat. 

I wasn’t sure about myself, so today was important, Schloesser said. I’m really happy about it. I hope I can continue that through the weekend. I’m very satisfied. I had tough matches, my opponents shot really well and I had to fight for it.

The Dutchman will face the USA’s Sawyer Sullivan first on Saturday. Sullivan was second in qualifying and said his matches were “difficult”.

Competition continues with mixed team eliminations on Friday morning in Antalya.

Final fours: Antalya 2023

The compound medal matches are scheduled for Saturday 22 April. The archers are listed in semifinal pairs and their seed is given in brackets.

Compound men

Compound women