Indian young archer Dhiraj Bommadevara shined with a silver medal in the Asian Continental Qualification tournament being held in Bangkok on Saturday. With that, this 22-year-old archer also secured a 2024 Paris Olympics quota place.
In addition, Dhiraj Bommadevara became the first archer from our country to qualify for the Paris Olympics 2024. Dheeraj excelled beyond expectations and made it to the finals. He defeated Iranian archer Sadegh Ashrafi in a closely fought quarter-final. In the semi-finals held after that, he defeated Iran's Mohammadhossein Golshani. In the finals, Dheeraj finished second with 5-6 (29-28, 27-29, 28-28, 30-28, 25-26) (9-10) points against Lin Zih-Siang of Chinese Taipei.
Dhiraj Bommadevara continued his good form in the final and won the first set 28-27 to take an early lead of 2-0. Dheeraj dropped his first point of the tournament when he lost the second set 27-29 and drew the third set to tie the match 3-3. He quickly recovered in the fourth set with a perfect 30 to take a 5-3 lead, but Lin forced the shoot-off with a low-scoring 26-25 win in the final end. Dhiraj scored a 9 in comparison to Lin's 10 in the shoot-off to be satisfied with the silver medal.
Dhiraj Bommadevara will head to the Kim Archery School in Korea with his coach Sonam Tshering Bhutia later this month after getting approval from the sports ministry’s Mission Olympic Cell.
However, in the women's individual category, Indian archers could not win the Paris Olympics quota. Ankita Bhakat, who entered the ring with huge expectations, turned back in the quarter finals. She lost to Uzbekistan archer Ziyodakhon Abdusattorova 4-6 (29-23, 27-27, 24-25, 27-27, 24-26).
Another Indian archer, Tarundeep Rai lost 0-6 to Lin Zih-Siang of Chinese Taipei in the quarterfinal and missed his shot on the medal.
As per the Olympic qualification system, two Paris Olympics quota places per gender will be awarded at the ACQT on the basis of the final standings of individual match-play competitions. The quota places shall be attributed to the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of the highest ranked athletes and an NOC shall not obtain more than one quota place per gender at the ACQT.