Top 5: Best photos from the European Championships in Antalya

Yasemin Anagoz shoots during the Olympic qualification tournament in Antalya in 2021.

Turkey’s national federation photographer Saygin Akinci was behind the lens for last week’s European Championships in Antalya.

He is – like many of those who take pictures of the sport – an archery fan, too.

“I love shooting archers doing their job, not posing, which is real. I try to tell the story of the event in pictures for those who aren’t there – so everything on the field is what I’m interested in… athletes, judges, coaches, even the animals,” he says. You’ll find some of Antalya’s famous cats in the albums from this event.

“Catching moments makes me happy. Emotions don’t fade away.”

With Olympic quota places and European titles on the line, there was plenty of emotion on display in Turkey.

1) Pure joy

Lisa Barbelin’s reaction when she qualified her Olympic quota place was beautiful. She was equally as expressive when she won the European Champion title two days later.

2) Team

Antalya has been hosting international archery tournaments for a very long time. These are the volunteers that work with the scoring team to run scoresheets in and out of the field. What you might not know is that most of them are actually youth members of Turkey’s national squad.

3) Intense

“He looks like an archer guard from Middle Earth,” says Saygin. Although he seems to be looking at the camera, Kacper Sierakowski must be thinking of something much deeper.

4) Summer sun

Even the local cats needed to find a little shade later in the week, once the storm had passed.

5) Embrace

Turkish head coach Goktug Ergin is hugging Gulnaz Coskun and Yasemin Anagoz after they both made the quarterfinals of the Olympic qualification tournament – to face each other – guaranteeing a quota place when he says: “You’ve given me the gift of my life.” It shows how much the Games matters to everyone involved.