Indian para-archer Harvinder Singh became the winner of first ever archery medal in the Paralympics on 3rd September. Singh defeated Kim Min Su of Korea in a thrilling shoot-off for the men’s individual recurve bronze in the ongoing Games.
“Obviously they’re (Korea) an archery powerhouse and have been dominant against us. The key was not to let him dominate. It really paid off,” Singh, who won the shoot-off with a perfect 10 against Kim’s 8, said in a virtual press conference.
Singh who is current world No. 23 won the bronze playoff 6-5 (26-24, 27-29, 28-25, 25-25, 26-27) (10-8). “I may have won the medal but behind the scenes many have worked for it. My coaches, family, support staff, SAI had a big role to play in achieving this feat. It’s a team effort,” the 31-year-old said.
India has sent a team to each Paralympic Games since 1984 but it was in Rio 2016 Games that an athlete, Pooja competed in the para-archery event. Singh was also the first athlete from India to win a gold medal at a major para competition in the 2018 Asian Games.
Singh however lost the semifinals to to world number 10 Kevin Mather of the USA 6-4 in an intense five-setter (25-28, 24-24, 25-25, 25-24, 24-26).
“I was really disappointed after losing the semifinal, I could have easily won that. So I wanted to give it all in the bronze match. I had nothing to lose,” he said.