1st Asian Grand Prix
Bangkok, Thailand, February, 2012
Day 4: 19/02/2012 : India emerges on top with four gold, five silver and two bronze medals
For a change, the Indian compound archers outshine their recurve counterparts in an international archery championship.
The men's compound team of Rajat Chauhan, Ritul Chatterjee and Ch. Jignas made a clean sweep by winning the men's team final defeating Hong Kong by 224-211 points. Earlier, Jignas won the individual and Rajat and Jhano Hansdah took the mixed team gold medals. India won against Korea 236-224 in the semifinals.
The compound women's team of Jhano Hansdah, Gagandeep Kaur and Manjudha Soy lost to the eventual winner Thailand in the semifinals at 217-221. The Indians went on to win the bronze medal out-shooting Hong Kong at 227-215 in the play-off.
India's full strength recurve teams came a cropper in the final of the men's and women's team events.
Deepika Kumari, Chekrovolu Swuro and L. Bombayla Devi, who will be representing India in the women's recurve event at the London Olympics, suffered a defeat at the hands of China by 211-213 points. Japan took the bronze medal getting the better of France at 210-202 in the third place play-off.
The Indians beat Japan in the semifinals at 217-213 while China outplayed France at 217-209.
The new-look Indian men's recurve side, comprising Jayanta Talukdar, Mangal Singh Champia and Thupuvoyi Swuro, won easily against Japan in the semifinals at 222-219 but found France a tough team to down in the final. The Indian lost 217-218. Korea took the bronze medal beating Japan 223-215.
India ended the championship on a high making a rich haul of four gold, five silver and two bronze medals to rank No. 1 in the medal tally.
The compound team contributed three gold medals. The fourth gold was won by the mixed recurve team.
Ch. Jignas and Rajat Chauhan became the two Indians to win two gold medals in this championship. Jignas added the team gold to the individual he won earlier while Rajat added his team gold to the mixed team gold he had won the previos day.
Day 3: 18/02/2012 : India wins three gold, three silver, one bronze
India won a rich haul of three gold, three silver and a bronze medal on the third day. Two teenage sensations, Chittibomma Jignas and National champion Rajat Chauhan, combined to give India 1-2 in the men's compound event. In an all-Indian final, the 18-year-old AP-born Services' archer subdued Chauhan in the tie-breaker after the two tied the score at 144-144. Both hit the bull's eye but Jignas' arrow found to be closer to the centre to give him the second International gold after he won silver at the third Asian Grand Prix at Dhaka last May.
It could have been a clean sweep by the Indians had Ritul Chatterjee not lost the bronze medal battle against Nguyen Tien Cuong of Vietnam at 143-147.
India's quest to win the most coveted events of all, the recurve division, did not come off. India's two final entries, Mangal Singh Champia and Chekrovolu Swuro, have not done well in individual events over the years. That they managed to win silver medals was indeed praiseworthy.
In the semifinals, Chauhan ousted Nguyen at 149-147 and Jignas eliminated compatriot Ritul Chatterjee 147-143.
Champia came up against a vastly experienced Romain Girouille of France in the men's recurve final where the two shared the five sets to tie the score at 5-5. In the one-arrow tie-breaker, the Frenchman shot a nine to the Indian eight in a touch and go contest.
Earlier, Champia won against Spain's Elias Cuesta by 7-3 set points in the semifinals.
Chekrovolu, who held an upper hand in the women's recurve final against Ren Hayakawa of Japan, erred at the beginning of the third set. After taking the first two sets and a commanding 4-0 set points, the Indian needed just one more set to win the gold medal. Chekrovolu's first arrow of the third set hit the seven point ring which completely unnerved the Indian.
Ren shot a 10 and a nine to take the set. Chekrovolu cracked in the fourth set shooting 8,9,9 to her opponent's 10,8,10. The deciding set was a touch and go affair with the confident Japanese winning it in the end.
Chekrovolu edged past Urangungalag Bishindee of Mongolia in the tie-break after both shared the five sets to tie the set score at 5-5. In the tie-breaker, the Indian's bull's eye found to be closer to the centre than the Mongolian's shot.
Both the Indian entries in the women's compound semifinals, Jhano Hansdah and Gagandeep Kaur, were beaten on way to the final. Jhano lost to ultimate gold medal winner Aung Ngeain of Myanmar 142-145 and Gagandeep fell to silver medallist Nurfatehah Mat Salleh Fatin of Malaysia at 141-143. In the battle for bronze, Jhano prevailed over her much younger opponent in the tie-breaker after both tied the score at 139-139. Jhano got a bull's eye to Gagandeep's 8.
Later, India won both the mixed team gold medals. The Indian mixed recurve team of Jayanta Talukdar and Laishram Bombayla Devi took gold beating the Japanese team at 143-142 in the final.
Rajat Chauhan and Jhano Hansdah combined well to give India the mixed compound team gold ahead of Myanmar by winning at 151-148.
Fourth seeded Indian recurve pair had it easy against France in the semifinals winning the contest at 148-142. In the other semifinals, Japan defeated Malaysia at 148-139.
In the compound section, India stopped Malaysia in the semifinals at 148-143 while Myanmar ousted Vietnam at 147-143 on way to final.
Individual events: Recurve:
Men's final: Romain Girouille (Fra) bt Mangal Singh Champia (Ind) 6-5 (tiebreak 9-8);
Men's Third Place: A.M. Khairul (Mas) bt E. Cuesta (Spa) 7-3.
Women's final: Ren Hayakawa (Jpn) bt Chekrovolu Swuro (Ind) 6-4;
Women's Third Place: Urangungalag Bishindee (Mgl) bt Siyi Lu (Chn) 6-0.
Individual events: Compound:
Men's final: Ch. Jignas (Ind) bt Rajat Chauhan (Ind) 144-144 (won on tie-break);
Men's Third Place: Nguyen Tien Cuong (Vie) bt Ritul Chatterjee (Ind) 145-144.
Women's final: Aung Ngeain (Myn) bt Nurfatehah M.S. Fatin (Mas) 143-136;
Women's Third Place: Jhano Hansdah (Ind) bt Gagandeep Kaur (Ind) 139-139 (10-8).
Day 2: 17/02/2012 : Seven Indians make it to semifinals
Seven Indian archers have entered the semifinals of different categories of the first Asian Grand Prix at Bangkok on the second day.
Mangal Singh Champia, who is more known as a strong archer in team events, made it to the individual semifinals after 2007, and will play Spain's Elisa Cuesta for a place in the men's recurve final. Another team player, Chekrovolu Swuro will take on Bishindee Urangungalay of Mongolia in the women's recurve semifinals.
Three Indian compound archers moved into the last four stage. National champion Rajat Chauhan will take on Nguyen Tien Cuong of Vietnam and Ch. Jignas and Ritul Chatterjee will play each other in semifinals. If Chauhan managed to prevail over the Vietnamese, it could be 1-2-3 for India for the first time at a Continental meet.
In the women's compound section, veteran Jhano Hansdah and young Gagandeep Kaur will meet Ngeain Aung of Myanmar and Fatin Nurfatehah Mat Salleh of Malaysia respectively.
The rest of the Indians failed to go past the quarterfinals stage.
Former compound men's National champion Chinna Raju Srither was the lone Indian to lose in quarterfinals.
The draw of luck pitted World Junior Champion Deepika Kumari and Chekrovolu Swuro in the pre-quarterfinals where the older Indian triumphed.
Two other Indian women recurve archers, L. Bombayla Devi and Rimil Buriuly too were eliminated in the pre-quarterfianls.
Manjudha Soy and debutante Parveena went out of contention in the pre-quarterfinals of the women's compound individual section.
Day 1: 16/02/2012 : Jayanta Talukdar Shines
Indian archers did very well on the opening day of the four-day first Asian Grand Prix archery tournament at Bangkok.
Talukdar, who had already booked an Olympic berth, finished a creditable fourth in a tough field of 92 archers with a total of 665 points. His compatriots, Mangal Singh Champia, who returned to the side after long, was 11th overall with 659 in the individual qualification round. The other two, Thupuvoyi Swuro was 30th with 647 and shockingly Rahul Banerjee ended 40th with 638. This meant Banerjee was out of the team championship.
As a team the Indians finished third overall with 1972 points behind Korea (2001) and Malaysia (1989).
In contrast, the women's recurve side, comprising L. Bombayla Devi, Deepika Kumar and Chekrovolu Swuro stood first with 1932 points. The men's compound team also ended first with 2083 points and women's compound side was second with 2018.
The three men compound archers, National champion Rajat Chauhan (695), Ch. Jignas (695) and Ritul Chatterjee (693), swept the top three positions in the individual section. The fourth Indian, Chinna Raju Srither (684) finished seventh.
The women's recurve trio, which earned India Olympic quota places, Laishram Bombayla Devi (646), junior world champion Deepika Kumari (644) and veteran Chekrovolu Swuro (642), finished fourth, eighth and ninth respectively. The fourth Indian entry, Rimil Buriuly (624), was 19th overall in the qualifying rounds.
The tournament is the first major outdoor tournament of the year. Three World Cup events will follow in the coming months for the archers to complete their build up to the Olympics in London. The famous cricket ground, Lord's, is the venue for Olympic archery event.
To make full use of the opportunity many top Asian and European teams are in Bangkok to get their first benchmarks in the Olympic year.
Countries like Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Spain, France, Great Britain, Georgia, Hong Kong, Iran, Iraq, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, the Philippines, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Thailand, Chinese Taipei and Vietnam, apart from India are in contention for honours in two styles of archery: recurve and compound bow. Recurve is the only form of archery accepted as an Olympic sport.
As many as 236 participants have entered in the competition making this GP by far the biggest ever Asian Grand Prix.
Team: 1. Korea 2001, 2. Malaysia 1989, 3. India (Jayanta, Mangal and Thupuvoyi) 1972.
Individual: 4. Jayanta Talukdar 665 points, 11. Mangal Singh Champia 659, 30. Thupuvoyi Swuro 647, 40. Rahul Banerjee 638.
Team: 1. India (Bombayla, Deepika and Chekrovolu) 1932 points, 2. France 1931, 3. China 1929.
Individual: 4. L. Bombayla Devi 646 points, 8. Deepika Kumari 644, 9. Chekrovolu Swuro 642, 19. Rimil Buriuly 624.
Team: India (Rajat, Jignas, Ritul) 2083 points, 2. Vietnam 2039, 3. Thailand 2025.
Individual: 1. Rajat Chauhan 695 points, 2. 2. Ch. Jignas 695, 3. Ritul Chatterjee 693, 7. Chinna Raju Srither 684.
Team: 1. Malaysia 2019 points, 2. India (Jhano, Manjudha, Gagandeep) 2018, 3. Thailand 1968.
Individual: 3. Jhano Hansdah 675 points, 4. Manjudha Soy 673, 5. Gagandeep Kaur 670, 7. Parveena 665.