The Jakarta Post
After delivering the high performance expected at the 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, Indonesia's archery team has switched its focus to the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.
Indonesian archers were given a target of claiming two gold medals at the SEA Games in the Philippines, and they hit the bull's eye in the final on Sunday at the Clark Parade Grounds, some 80 kilometers from capital Manila.
Hendra Purnama, Riau Ega Salsabila and Arif Pangestu nailed the first archery gold for Indonesia in the men’s team recurve, defeating Malaysia's Haziq Kamaruddin, Khairul Mohamad and Muhamad Zolkepeli in a shootout after a 4-4 draw in regular time.
Hendra claimed the second gold in the men’s individual recurve after defeating Myanmar’s Htike Lin Oo 6-4.
“First, we treated the SEA Games as an opportunity to tighten our friendship with other Southeast Asian countries. Second, we also used it as a means to find new talents, such as Hendra, who competed in both the individual and team recurve [events] over the years but had never won [gold],” Indonesia archery team manager Tofan Tri Anggoro said on Monday.
Hendra and Ega were assisted in winning the team gold by junior archer Arif, who debuted at the Philippines Games. The 15-year-old is already looking beyond his golden Games performance, and is now motivated to aim for a chance at the Olympics.
“[My seniors] gave me a lot of motivation," he said, noting that the SEA Games was a good event "to gain experience”.
With two Games golds in the bag, Indonesia's archers are more confident in looking ahead to the Olympics, where they will compete in the men’s and the women’s individual recurve events. They qualified for the two events following their performance in June at the 2019 World Archery Championships in the Netherlands.
The Indonesian Archery Association (Perpani) is yet to select the archers who will compete in Tokyo.
Next June, Hendra will battle it out at the world championship in Berlin, Germany, for a slot in the men’s team recurve at the 2020 Olympics.
“[It] really depends on how many slots we will have at the Olympics. But of course, we want to compete in every event offered [at Tokyo 2020], which are the men’s individual, women’s individual, men’s team and women’s team, as well as the mixed team [events].
“We’re hoping to send six archers, three men and three women,” said Tofan.
In addition to the two gold medals, Indonesian archers also collected two silvers and four bronzes, which put the country third in the overall standings at the 30th SEA Games after Vietnam in the lead and Thailand in second place.
The Indonesian women’s team of Triya Andriyani, Sri Ranti dan Yurike Pereira had to settle for a silver medal after losing 217-221 in the final to Thailand’s Kanoknapus Kaewchomphu, Kanyavee Manesombatkul and Kodchaporn Pratumsuwan.
Earlier, Riau Ega and Diananda Choirunisa also settled for a silver in the mixed team recurve after losing 5-1 to Vietnam’s Thi Dao Loc and Phi Vu Nguyen.
Indonesian archer Choirunisa Diananda (right) releases an arrow as her teammate Riau Ega Agatha Salsabila (left) looks on, during the mixed team recurve final on Dec. 8, 2019 at the 30th SEA Games in Pampanga, the Philippines. The Indonesian pair won silver after losing to Vietnam's Loc Thi dao and Nguyen Hoang Phi Vu. (Antara/Nyoman Budhiana)
The four bronze medal contributions came from Titik Kusumawardani, Diananda and Linda Lestari in the women’s team recurve, Ega in the men’s individual recurve, Sri Ranti and Prima Wardhana in the mixed team compound; and Yoke Akbar in the men’s individual compound.
Tofan said that sending the national archers to a two-week training camp in South Korea had crossed his mind, but he had dismissed the idea out of hand, as the ideal training period at the Korean camp was a minimum five months. Another alternative was to send the archers to several short-term international trials, he added.
“Our archers have already mastered the necessary techniques. What they need are sparring partners, hence the overseas trials,” he said.