Gibson makes final four but Mister Perfect’s perfect run over

Ella Gibson shoots in Paris.

British compound woman Ella Gibson has made her second final four of the season, having already won the season opener in Antalya, but Mike Schloesser’s unbeaten run came to an end during eliminations day in Paris.

“It was really tough. I had a fair amount of expectation on this. I can’t wait to go out on Saturday and see what I can do again,” said Gibson, the number one seed at this third stage of the Hyundai Archery World Cup after setting a European record during qualifying.

“I tried to just keep my head in the game and not lose it, and keep the 10s flowing.”

Gibson will be joined by Jyothi Surekha Vennam, Mariya Shkolna and Sophie Dodemont in the finals arena at Chateau de Vincennes on Saturday afternoon.

After France’s Nicolas Girard knocked out compound men’s world number one Schloesser in a shoot-off in the last 16 – the pair tied at 147 in regulation – he then beat Domagoj Buden to book his slot in the final four.

The quartet is completed by long-time international Braden Gellenthien, Antalya stage fourth-place finisher Jean Pizarro and Anders Faugstad.

Schloesser looked an early favourite to win his third stage of the season after seeding top – for the sixth consecutive circuit event – and shooting back-to-back perfect matches to open eliminations. But he dropped three points to Nicolas and then lost the tiebreak by about three millimetres to the Frenchman’s near-perfect shot, ending his unbeaten run of international matches at 20.

“I shot really good and Nicolas shot better in that moment,” said Mike. “It feels a little disappointing but I shot good.”

Nicolas Girard is the third French compound man to make the final four this season. His teammates Jean Philippe Boulch and Adrien Gontier made the arena at the season opener in Antalya.

“I’m really happy. It was really important for me to make the finals here in Paris,” said Nicolas. “I want to win this weekend. I’m going to work hard to make it happen.”

Girard, Boulch and Quentin Baraer will also shoot for the compound men’s team title in the French capital on Saturday morning.

The afternoon will bring the first chance at a medal this year for two-time Hyundai Archery World Cup Champion Braden Gellenthien of the USA. He most recently podiumed a stage when he won the 2021 season opener – and was then runner-up at the Hyundai Archery World Cup Final.

Girard, Anders Faugstad, Jyothi Surekha Vennam and Mariya Shkolna will all be appearing in their first career final fours.

Neither Faugstad nor Vennam, however, are strangers to the spotlight. Both previously finished second individually at the World Archery Championships, the former in 2019 and the latter at the end of 2021. 

“It’s great to be back,” said Anders, who is also a former world under-21 champion. “I have really high confidence for Saturday. I came here as an underdog, I haven’t won in a while. I’m just here to shoot and if I win, it’s a bonus.”

Competition continues in Paris with mixed team eliminations on Friday morning followed by recurve eliminations in the afternoon.

Final fours: Paris 2022

The compound medal matches are scheduled for Saturday 25 June. The archers are listed in semifinal pairs and their seed is given in brackets.

Compound men

Compound women