Athlete of the Year: Archery World Cup Winner Aida Recurve Women’s Pick
One of the most well-known, well-liked smiles on the international archery circuit, Mexico’s Aida ROMAN won the recurve women’s Athlete of the Year vote by quite some margin.
A public poll was averaged with the choices of a panel of archery experts to rank the top five shortlisted athletes in each division. Aida walked away with a 12-point lead over JUNG Dasomi, Korea’s most decorated international recurve archer in 2014.
Aida’s win was announced at World Archery’s inaugural Gala at Las Vegas earlier this month, where World Archery President Prof Dr Ugur ERDENER presented her gong. Here are the full results…
1) Aida ROMAN (MEX) – 37%
Twelve percentage points clear of the next nearest shortlisted athlete after the vote, Aida ROMAN was almost undisputable as the best recurve women’s athlete in 2014. After taking silver at the London 2012 Olympic Games, she became something of a hero in Mexico.
A quiet 2013 was simply a transition year: she lost her old coach and spent the season searching for a new one. Her first tournament with new mentor LEE Mi Joung – who won the Coach of the Year Award – was the indoor worlds in Nimes at the start of 2014, which she promptly won.
It was the precursor to a strong showing over the Archery World Cup season – which was capped with Aida’s first Archery World Cup Champion title in the Olympic Capital, next to the official countdown clock to the Rio 2016 Games.
An event that is undoubtedly hot on the defending Olympic silver medallist’s mind.
2) JUNG Dasomi (KOR) – 25%
Individual winner of the World Cup stage in Medellin – but knocked out in the first round at the Lausanne Final, Dasomi’s biggest finish of the season came later in September.
Double gold medallist at the Asian Games: the largest multisport event outside of the Olympics.
JUNG Dasomi, by the way, was the Korean woman who won the London 2012 Test Event – before failing to qualify for the actual event one year later. That was nearly four years ago, as the Rio warm-up is scheduled for the end of 2015.
3) Lisa UNRUH (GER) – 15%
The German ladies – who have been shooting together for many years – picked up medals throughout the year, and sent a maximum two to the World Cup Final in Lausanne. Along with Florian KAHLLUND in the men’s competition, 2014 was the most successful year for German recurves in quite some time.
UNRUH earned her nomination ahead of teammate Elena RICHTER thanks to the fact she won the world field in Zagreb in August.
4) LI Jiaman (CHN) – 14%
Two Chinese athletes climbed the podium at Lausanne 2014, but neither were LI Jiaman.
Instead, Jiaman won double-gold at her home Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing earlier in the Summer – despite being the only athlete standing alone on the field of play, her coach in the spectator seating instead of just behind her.
Fingers crossed we’ll see her again in 2015 at the youth worlds in Yankton.
5) Deepika KUMARI (IND) – 9%
It’s no secret that KUMARI had a poor start to 2014. She failed to make the Indian team, then when she did travel with the squad, failed to make an impact.
And despite the fact she entered last season with a run of three Archery World Cup Final silver medals but did not qualify for Lausanne, she reminded us all why she became such a sensation in 2010 when she won the Commonwealth Games at the age of 16.
Faced with adversity, she ditched her equipment, went back to her old bow, old coach and old success – finishing with three medals at the fourth stage of the 2014 Archery World Cup Wroclaw, two of them gold.
Deepika’s going nowhere.
Agree or disagree with the final Athlete of the Year 2014: Recurve Women’s results? Tell us on Twitter: @worldarchery