Norway’s Anders Faugstad a surprise finalist at the 2019 world championships
Anders Faugstad will shoot for the compound men’s gold medal at the 2019 Hyundai World Archery Championships in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands, becoming Norway’s first world championship finalist in 14 years.
The world number 70 is just 19 years old – and a surprise addition to the schedule on compound finals day.
He qualified in just 68th place but proceeded to scythe through the eliminations field. His run took out Gilles Seywert of Luxembourg, Jean Pizarro of Puerto Rico, and then both Yang Jaewon and Kim Jongho of Korea.
Anders survived a double shoot-off against Yang before defeating the number one seed Jongho by a single point, 147-146.
“Starting from 68th and going into the gold medal matches is something very rare, really. The most difficult thing today was against the guy from Puerto Rico,” he said, referring to Pizarro.
“I started with 27, he started with 29. Two points down and you don’t have any chance, it’s like very hard mentally to go come back from it. But I shot two 30 rounds after that and then I started rolling and luckily I caught a break.”
Faugstad follows in a small but significant tradition of Norwegian compound archers.
The last world championship finalist from the Scandinavian country was Morten Boe, who took silver against Morgan Lundin of Sweden back in 2005 in Madrid. The Norwegian compound men’s team won gold back in 2001, where the same Morten Boe also took bronze.
Faugstad, who took a bronze in the junior category at the European Indoor Championships earlier this year, was philosophical about his rise through the ranks.
Like his gold medal match opponent in ’s-Hertogenbosch, 23rd-seeded James Lutz of the USA, he has well outperformed the level his seeding should suggest.
“On Saturday, it’s going to be me against James, and I know he is a really good shooter and it’s gonna be a cool match,” said Anders.
“Because now the bronze is between the first and third seed and the gold is between 68th and 23rd. So it's a very… mixed match, I guess!”
The first and third seeds contesting the compound men’s bronze medal match are the USA’s Braden Gellenthien and Kim Jongho of Korea, currently ranked second and 12th in the world, respectively.
The 2019 Hyundai World Archery Championships take place on 10-16 June in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands.