India’s star archer Deepika Kumari on Friday finished 9th in the Women’s Ranking Round as Archery action began on Day 0 of the Tokyo Olympics. Hours ahead of the opening ceremony, Deepika led India’s campaign at the Games as she was the first athlete from the country to be involved in competitive action.
Deepika Kumari, the World No. 1 had a topsy-turvy start as she managed 56 with 3 10s in the first series of the first half. However, she kept recovering as the Ranking Round progressed. She was well-placed to finish inside the top 6 but a 7 in the final arrow of the round hurt her chances as she fell from 7th to 9th.
Deepika will now face Bhutan’s Karma in the first round (Round of 64) of the Women’s Individual Recurve Event, starting July 27 in Tokyo. Notably, Deepika had finished 20th in the Ranking Round at the Rio Olympics and 8th on her debut at the London Games.
Deepika was in prime form in the lead up to the Games, winning Archery World Cup Stage 1 and Stage 3 individual medals in Guatemala City and Paris. She also won the mixed team gold along with her partner, Atanu Das in Paris in June.
The Ranking Round will determine the seeding for the Women’s Individual as well as Team competitions. Notably, Deepika is the only Indian woman archer who has made it to the Tokyo Games.
For the mixed team event, only the top 16 teams will qualify. With Deepika finishing 9th, India’s chances to make the field look bright.
A lot is expected of Indian archers and a spot in the Mixed Team Event is expected to be sealed.
Atanu Das, Pravin Jadhav and Taundeep Rai will be in action. The archer finishing with the best score is likely to pair with Deepika Kumara in the Mixed Team Event.
Notably, The Mixed Team Event is the first medal event in archery as the action gets underway on July 24.