Taiwan’s male archers got off to a disastrous start in their 16-round battle against Italy in the Olympic men’s team competition yesterday and never recovered, shattering any hopes they may have had of clinching an Olympic medal.
A day after an underwhelming performance in the preliminary round, which left the team seeded 11th among 12 teams, the trio of Chen Yu-cheng, Kuo Cheng-wei and Wang Cheng-pang hoped to redeem themselves in the knockout stage of the competition. Instead, they were thumped by the Italians 216-206 and posted the lowest score of any of the eight teams competing in the four first round elimination matches. In the men’s team match, in which each team shoots a total of 24 arrows worth a maximum of 10 points each, Taiwan quickly trailed 28-23 after only three arrows, hurt by a rare 6 from 19-year-old Chen. The gap widened to 12 points halfway through the match due in part to another 6 by Kuo, leaving Taiwan too far behind to mount a comeback. The three archers still have one event left at this year’s Olympics, the men’s individual tournament.