The French mixed double prevents an American hat-trick

Shanghai – China, April 15, 2012: The Riverside Boulevard in Shanghai on the east bank of Huangpu River welcomed the final matches of the Archery World Cup Stage taking place in Shanghai for the second time today. The world’s top nation in compound, USA, entered the three team gold matches as the favourite. The American athletes won unquestionable victories in the men’s and women’s events. They were stopped from a hat-trick, however, by the French mixed double. Trailing by four points half-way through the match, Dominique GENET and Pascale LEBECQUE (FRA) managed to reverse the score and they won by a whisker!

Compound Mixed Team – Bronze Medal: Mexico (4) v Great Britain (2)

In the quarterfinals the Mexican pair beat the world champion pair of Italy after a tight match, 150-149. In the semi-final Julio Ricardo FIERRO/ Linda OCHOA were close to the top seeded team USA but finally conceded defeat 153-155. Seeded No. 2, Duncan BUSBY/Danielle BROWN (GBR) defeated No. 7 Belgium, 152-151, before they fell apart against France, 148-154.

Different order of shooting for the teams, Britain’s female representative shooting first and Mexico’s lady shooting second! Paralympic and Para World Championships champion, BROWN showed her teammate the way when she opened the match with a perfect shot. The British scored another two 10s and a 9 to take the lead by one point, 39-38.

In the second end the score were reversed (38-39) and the match was tied 77-77 at the half-way mark. The tie remained with only four arrows to go as the two pairs scored 36 points each (113-113). Great Britain then scored 10-9-9 and Mexico 10-9-10. As BUSBY concluded his team’s match with a 9, OCHOA needed 9 or better to win and 8 to go to a shoot-off, but she released a 7 and let victory go to Great Britain by one point (150-149)!

Compound Mixed Team – Gold Medal: USA (1) v France (3)

The No. 1 seeds had a tough time against the No. 9 in the quarterfinal, but Reo WILDE/Jamie VAN NATTA finally overtook Venezuela by the smallest possible gap, 152-151. The Americans then beat the Mexican pair, 155-153 to reach the gold final. The other finalists, Dominique GENET/Pascale LEBECQUE of France, scored 155 points to defeat Australia (No. 20) and 154 to upset Great Britain (2).

The USA is unquestionably the No. 1 team in all compound categories. In Shanghai, they contested the three gold finals. Their top male archer and world champion, WILDE, could also look for the hat trick today, as he also qualified for the individual final.

WILDE/VAN NATTA scored 10-10-9-10 twice in the first two ends and led by four points at the halfway mark (78-74). The outcome already seemed like it had been decided, but was not counting on an impossible return from their opponents! Starting with a perfect series (four 10s) in the third end, the French initially came back to one point (114-115).

LEBECQUE scored a 9 to start the final end and her pair then concluded with three 10s. For their part, the Americans scored 9-10, but an 8 by VAN NATTA was fatal to them. Even with his perfect last shot, WILDE could not save his team from defeat. Fantastic come-back and victory for France: 153-152!

Compound Women Team – Bronze Medal: India (5) v Italy (2)

Despite being seeded higher in Shanghai, the Italians entered this match with the highest caution. In the previous match they conceded defeat 225-227 to the No. 6 seed, Russia. Besides, Italy also lost their only face-to-face against Mexico, although it was at the very first World Cup event, Stage 1 in Porec 2006.

Laura LONGO/Anastasia ANASTASIO/Marcella TONIOLI got off to a good start with three 10s and three 9s. Their opponents from India had five arrows in the yellow (10 or 9) but a 7 by PARVEENA had them trailing by two (55-57). Her teammate, Jyothi V. SUREKHA, the youngest competitor in Shanghai at 16, then also scored a 7 in the second end. The gap increased, 113-108, in favour of their contenders.

The European representatives were a cut above in this match. The Italians indeed kept all their arrows but one in the yellow (10 or 9), an 8 by LONGO in the second end. They scored 58 and 59 points to conclude the match and clinched it easily, 230-217.

Compound Women Team – Gold Medal: USA (1) v Russia (6)

This is a classic in compound archery! The teams of USA and Russia have faced each other 11 times since 2006! Seven times in a gold final, once in a bronze final and three times in the semi-finals. The Russians have a numerical advantage with six wins, but the Americans won four gold medal matches. Besides, the USA won their last three encounters: gold final at the Shanghai World Cup 2010 and 2011, as well as the World Indoor Championships final last February.

Polina NIKITINA had some problems finding her way to the yellow in the first end. Her first two arrows were 8s and the Russians trailed by one point, 55-56. At 23 years old, NIKITINA is a newcomer in the Russian team after she finished 1st (individual) and 2nd (team) at the Summer Universiade last year.

The gap increased in the second end (109-113), but led by the reigning individual world champion Albina LOGINOVA, Russia came back to two points behind with only one end to go (165-168). However, the Eastern European representatives could not raise their level enough to hope for a comeback. They let Jamie VAN NATTA/Christie COLIN/Erika ANSCHUTZ clinch another gold medal on the score of 224-218.

Compound Men Team – Bronze Medal: Italy (5) v Venezuela (3)

The Italian team set a new national record in their first elimination match with 237 points. After that, Herian BOCCALI/Luigi DRAGONI/Sergio PAGNI then defeated the No. 4 team, Iran, in the quarterfinal but they were then stopped by the No. 1, USA. Their opponents in the bronze medal, Leandro ROJAS/Maico GOMEZ/Gabriel OLIFEROW, beat Iran in the quarterfinal but were defeated by France in the semi-final. The only duel between the two teams was at World Cup 2010 Stage 1 in Croatia and went to Venezuela.

Led by PAGNI, World Cup Final winner 2009 and 2010, the Italians got off to a flying start with one 10 each but they suffered from a strong gust of wind at the end of the first end that made DRAGONI and PAGNI shoot 8 each, and the trailed by one point (55-56).

The Venezuelans had more consistent shots in the first half of the game, with only 10s and 9s. The gap increased at the halfway mark, 114-111. In the third end, ROJAS/GOMEZ/OLIFEROW allowed one point to their contenders from Italy who scored 58 points (171-169). As the two teams scored 55 points each to conclude, the advantage remained on Venezuela’s side. Bronze medal for South America: 226-224!

Compound Men Team – Gold Medal: USA (1) v France (2)

The two highest seeded teams worked things out to meet up for gold in Shanghai! Between 2006 and 2012, USA and France have faced each other five times. The only match won by the French was shot in a Hit/Miss format at the Summer Universiade on Chinese soil in 2011. The latest victory by the Americans was clinched no later than February this year in the gold final at the World Indoor Championships in Las Vegas.

Dave COUSINS/Reo WILDE/Braden GELLENTHIEN got off a stunning start with 60 points for an early comfortable lead of three (60-57). The Americans went on with only one arrow out of the 10-ring, a 9 by COUSINS at the start of the second end. With the exact same series twice (10-9-10-9-9-10), Dominique GENET/Christophe DOUSSOT/Pierre Julien DELOCHE were five points behind at the half-way mark (114-119).

The French then improved a little with 58 points in the third end, but were outshone by the performance of their opponents who scored another perfect 6-arrow series and 60 points! Intermediate score: 179-172. The Americans could have tied their own record of 239 set last year at the World Championships in Turin, but GELLENTHIEN released a 9 with the last arrow of the match. With yet another fantastic score they won another impressive victory, 238-229!

The team matches will be followed by the four individual medal matches in the afternoon.

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