OLYMPICS/Taiwan's men's archery team wins silver at Tokyo Olympics (update)

07/26/2021 07:56 PM
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CNA photo July 26, 2021
CNA photo July 26, 2021

Taipei, July 26 (CNA) Taiwan's men's archery team on Monday bagged a silver medal after it was bested by South Korea in the gold medal match at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

South Korea's three-man team was unbelievably precise in beating Taiwan 6-0, shooting perfect 10s on 13 of its 18 arrows.

Taiwan's Tang Chih-chun (湯智鈞), Wei Chun-heng (魏均珩), and Deng Yu-cheng (鄧宇成), meanwhile, posted respectable scores, including six 10s from 18 arrows, but respectable was not enough in a final in which the Koreans were at their dominant best.

It was the fifth gold medal for the Korean men in the team event at the past six Olympics.

The silver medal was the third medal overall for Taiwan at this year's Olympic Games, and matched Taiwan's best performance ever in archery at the Summer Games, a men's team silver medal in Athens in 2004.

The silver was also the fourth medal Taiwan's archers have won at an Olympic Games.

After winning the medal and matching Taiwan's best finish ever in 2004, Wei remained humble, telling Taiwanese media that the team still had much to learn and improve on.

Tang, meanwhile, admitted that he was so nervous before the gold medal match that he was shaking badly when he walked into the venue.

Their coach Liu Chan-ming (劉展明) attributed the silver medal finish to the efforts of the entire Olympic archery squad, including the women's archery team that was ousted in the opening round a day earlier for sharing tips on the archery venue.

"We are the best team," Liu said.

In the team archery competition, the teams compete in games of six arrows, with each of the three team members firing two arrows. Winning a game earns two points and a tie is worth one point, with the first to five points winning the match.

The men's team advanced to the gold medal match after first eliminating Team Australia in a shoot-off during the opening round match before topping China 5-1 in the quarter-final earlier in the day.

Taiwan put its best foot forward in the semifinal, completing a three-game 6-0 whitewash of the Netherlands with five 10s out of six in the final game to give itself a shot Olympic gold for the first time in 17 years.

Wei, Tang and Deng were likely hoping that momentum would carry over to the final, but when South Korea opened with a 59 in the first frame (five 10s and a 9) to Taiwan's 55 and a perfect 60 in the second game to Taiwan's 58, it was clear the Koreans were headed for gold.

Taiwan's sports authorities felt archery was one of the events in which Taiwan could win a medal, but the team's performance in the previous two days certainly raised questions of whether that could happen.

The women's archery team was bested by Germany 6-2 in the opening round of the women's team event on Sunday, dashing hopes for a repeat of the team's bronze-medal winning performance at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

The mixed doubles team was also eliminated in the first round on Saturday.

The three Taiwanese male archers and the three women's archers, Lei Chien-ying (雷千瑩), Lin Chia-en (林佳恩), and Tan Ya-ting (譚雅婷) will compete in individual matches starting Tuesday.

(By Joseph Yeh)

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