Antalya 2019: Recurve finals line-up, preview and predictions
Russia is guaranteed two recurve archers at the 2019 Hyundai Archery World Cup Final because it’s taking place in Moscow – and the host always receives spots in each category. But that automatic quota could be augmented in Antalya if Sayana Tsyrempilova can continue Ksenia Perova’s winning ways next to the beach.
Zheng Yichai /Sayana Tsyrempilova
Recurve women’s gold medal match
A Russian recurve woman has had a hold on the Antalya stage for some years. After taking silver in 2016, reigning World Archery Champion Ksenia Perova won in Turkey in 2017 and 2018.
Now the baton passes to Sayana Tsyrempilova who, when approached for an interview after making the final, wryly said: “Oh, finally, I get to speak.” Sayana’s English is excellent and she has frequently helped by translating for her teammates.
This is her turn in the spotlight. A first individual medal on the Hyundai Archery World Cup guaranteed, the world number 47 could also supplement that Russian host quota at this year’s Hyundai Archery World Cup Final with a victory.
Antalya is Zheng Yichai’s fourth international event. She’s been on the Chinese team since this time last year. The 21-year-old’s highest finish to date is sixth.
The pick: Sayana
Steve Wijler /Brady Ellison
Recurve men’s gold medal match
This is turning into a vintage Brady Ellison year, the likes of which we haven’t seen since 2011 – when he won three stages of the tour and the Archery World Cup Final.
He’s guaranteed a third medal on the 2019 season here in Antalya but it could also be his second win. Ellison already took gold in Medellin. But it was perhaps his bronze medal match in Shanghai that was more impressive – a straight-set victory and just one arrow out of the 10-ring.
Steve Wijler didn’t have a good last event in China. But the world number two shot a personal best in qualification this week and looks far more comfortable on the Turkish coast.
Outdoors, Steve and Brady have matched up just once before – in Salt Lake City in 2018 – and the Dutchman won it. Ellison is in different shape in 2019, however.
The pick: Brady
Tan Ya-Ting /Alejandra Valencia
Recurve women’s bronze medal match
When will Tan Ya-Ting win a stage of the Hyundai Archery World Cup? The perennial contender has been waiting for her first individual victory for so long.
It won’t come in Antalya – but she could pick up a second consecutive bronze medal on the circuit.
Alejandra Valencia, at her first major tournament of the season, battled up from the 14th seed to make this final. The experienced Mexican archer last took an individual international medal at the Berlin stage of the tour in 2017.
The pick: Ya-Ting
Mete Gazoz /Mauro Nespoli
Recurve men’s bronze medal match
After seeding top at this event, Turkish star Mete Gazoz would have loved to be shooting for gold at home. That wasn’t to be after he fell to Wijler in a loose semifinal.
Still, good archers consistently make podiums – and Mete is a good archer and this is a medal match.
The Turkish 19-year-old matches up well against Mauro Nespoli, too. He’s averaging 9.45 points per arrow in 2019 compared to his Italian opponent’s 9.23.
The pick: Mete
Team gold medal matches
Recurve mixed team final: Spain/Russia – Not the final you would have written at the start of the week but an interesting one, at that. Spain’s Miguel Alvarino Garcia last had big reuslts exactly four years ago.
Recurve women’s team final: Chinese Taipei/Mexico – These Mexican women were silver medallist at the last world championships. Aida Roman, Mariana Avitia and Alejandra Valencia can compete with the best teams out there.
The third stage of the 2019 Hyundai Archery World Cup takes place on 20-26 May in Antalya, Turkey.