Recurve men’s team championship won by China for first time

China beat India to take its first-ever recurve men’s team world title at the 2019 Hyundai World Archery Championships in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands.

“I’m very honoured to be on the stage of the world championships and I’m very proud to represent China to win this honour,” said Wei Shaoxuan.

Feng Hao, Ding Yiliang, and Wei were pulled from a deep field of Chinese archers out on the circuit this year. The young team started slowly but gradually raised their game to force out India. 

A confident Feng – aged just 18, and the opener for the team – said: “The first set, I thought we were going to lose it, but it was tied.” 

"After that, I thought we were going to win because I could tell that they were nervous. This team is powerful enough to win any match.” 

Both teams shot a ragged first end.

China opened up the throttle in the second, shooting 58 points. The Chinese team couldn’t quite finish off India in the third set, where a hairline decision on a line call led to another split.

A flinch from Atanu Das opening the critical fourth set didn’t stop India from starting with a 28. It wasn’t enough to scare China. 

Feng, Ding and Wei surged ahead to take the fourth set, 57 points to 52, and the title.

“Now we can go and get ready for Tokyo,” said Feng. “Will I be there? I’m 99% certain that I’ll be there.”

It was a difficult match for the Indian men. They did not display the aggression that had seen them through tough elimination matches against Chinese Taipei and the Netherlands to get to the big stage, but senior hand Tarundeep Rai was positive afterwards. 

“It’s not so bad. We lost in the final, and it was a big chance. But we were not able to convert this time into the gold,” he said. “At least we have learnt many things which can help us to change the colour of the medals in the future.” 

Korea beat a host team from the Netherlands in the recurve men’s team bronze medal match.

After Steve Wijler’s opening seven, the Netherlands followed up with five 10s to score 57 the hard way. It split the first set.

Then the Korean men put their immense class on display with a set of 59 points, each arrow soundtracked with a shout from coach Park Chaeson.

The Netherlands took the third set – 57 points to 56 – when Lee Woo Seok shot an eight – but Korea closed with a 58 to win, 5-3. The Netherlands shot three 10s to finish but the home team just wasn’t quite there.

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