Istanbul, Turkey – In a year of unprecedented victories, Brady Ellison (AZ), the number one world ranked archer, has taken his second consecutive World Cup Final, following a season in which he became the first recurve archer in history to win three consecutive World Cup Stages. With a 6-2 win over China’s Dai Xiaoxiang, Ellison should solidify his top world ranking heading into the pivotal 2012 season.

From World Archery Communications:

The 32 best archers of the world gathered this weekend in Istanbul, Turkey for the Archery World Cup Final 2011. The Kucuksu Palace, on the Asian banks of the Bosphorus Strait, was the site of this year’s Final. The defending champion Brady ELLISON (USA) won a second crown in the recurve men’s category. He beat DAI Xiaoxiang (CHN) in the gold final. CHENG Ming, another Chinese, won the women’s title against 17-year old Deepika KUMARI (IND).

The men’s bronze medal went to Dmytro HRACHOV (UKR) who defeated the young Gael PREVOST (FRA). On the women’s side, Berengere SCHUH (FRA) won 3rd place against JUNG Dasomi (KOR).

The three Koreans present in Istanbul, who were amongst the favourites in this World Cup Final, left with no individual medals. Only OH Jin Hyek and JUNG Dasomi won the mixed team match against the host double Yagiz YILMAZ/Natalia NASARIDZE.

The World Cup Final competition started on Saturday with the compound events. The recurve matches then followed on Sunday, 25 September with the quarterfinals and mixed team match in the morning, followed by the semifinals and the medal matches. The athletes had no second chance as they started directly in knockout matches.

The recurve matches were played in the best-of-five sets format. Each set consisted in three arrows and was worth two points; each archer got one point in case of a tied set. The first archer with six set points won the match. In case of a tied match at 5-5 in set points, a one-arrow shoot-off was played. The winner was the archer whose arrow is closest to centre.

The Rumeli Castle is just across the river, which is spanned by theFatih Sultan Mehmet Bridge, a structure connecting Europe with Asia and providing yet another dramatic backdrop for the archers.

Recurve Men – Bronze Medal Match
Gael PREVOST (FRA/4) v Dmytro HRACHOV (UKR/3)

The two athletes scored two 8s and one 9 in the first set of this match. The score was tied at 1-1 after three arrows. In the second set, HRACHOV found his way to the yellow with 10-10-9 and a 29-point series offering him two set points and the lead at 3-1.

The third set started well for PREVOST with a 10, but the Frenchman followed with a 6. After he scored a 9 to conclude (25 points), his opponent from Ukraine needed a 10 to tie the set. HRACHOV released a 9, and the set was won by PREVOST who tied at 3-3.

HRACHOV raised the level of his shooting in the final sets. He won the fourth set with a score of 10-10-9 (9-9-7 for PREVOST) to take the lead back at 5-3. The Ukrainian left no chance in the fifth set with a perfect triple 10 series to clinch the bronze medal by 7-3!

Recurve Men – Gold Medal Match
Brady ELLISON (USA/1) v DAI Xiaoxiang (CHN/7)

In the first set, the two competitors managed to shoot all their arrows in the yellow. However, the first lead (2-0) was for ELLISON who scored 28 points against 27 for DAI.

After shooting two 9s in the second set, the defending champion from USA needed a 10 to win it. He released another 9 for a tied set and one set point each: 3-1 for ELLISON. The third set was equal again (28 points each) and the American kept his lead, 4-2.

They both started the fourth set with 10-9. DAI was shooting first and released a final 9. Therefore, if ELLISON scored a 10, he would clinch the match and repeat at the World Cup champion…

Drawing out his experience, the world No. 1 recurve archer did it and clinched the World Cup season with another victory (6-2). This is his second win in a row in the World cup Final!

Recurve Women – Bronze Medal Match
JUNG Dasomi (KOR/1) v Berengere SCHUH (FRA/7)

The French competitor took the best start with opening the match with two 10s. She won the first two set points at stake to take the lead, 2-0. But the Korean scored a close-to-perfection second set (29 points) to tie at 2-2.

In the third set, SCHUH needed a 10 to win the set. Holding the pressure perfectly, she released an arrow right in the centre, “bull’s eye!” And 4-2 for the Frenchwoman!

While the young Korean seemed to lose track completely in the fourth set (9-8-8), her opponent continued with all three shots in the yellow (10-9-9). SCHUH clinched the set and won the World Cup bronze medal!

Recurve Women – Gold Medal Match
CHENG Ming (CHN/5) v Deepika KUMARI (IND/3)

Very good start for the two archers in this match for the World Cup title: 10-10 for each. The decision in this set was made by CHENG who scored a 9 at her third arrow, while her opponent only got an 8. The score was 2-0 for the Chinese.

Dramatic ending in the second set… CHENG had it in hand. She started with 10-9 and needed an 8 to win the set and lead 4-0. But she released a very bad shot that scored 6… only. KUMARI was happy to take the two points at stake and tie the match at 2-2.

In the third set, the Indian took advantage of a 7 by CHENG to take the lead for the first time of the match, 4-2. The third set was reversed with KUMARI shooting a 7 at her first arrow. CHENG won set and came back at 4-4.

The Chinese then opened the final set with a 6 (!), but she followed with two 10s to just clinch a tie (26-26). The match was thus tied as well at 5-5. Shoot-off!

CHENG was shooting first in the tie-break and scored a good 9 close to the 10-ring. The 17-year old KUMARI then needed a 10 to win, but she could not hold the pressure and finished with an 8. And the Chinese CHENG is the new World Cup Final winner!

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