Courtesy World Archery Communications, edited by USA Archery
The Face 2 Face Tournament in Amsterdam, also known as “the tension tournament,” proved once again to be worthy of its nickname. Top archers from around the world showed up to take a shot at the highly coveted title.
Unlike ordinary match play tournaments, Face 2 Face takes the spectator experience to a new level with a group event followed by head to head competition with a twist. Groups of 6 athletes shoot 12 arrows for score, and the top two of each group advance to the next round, where they are bracketed for head to head match play. The finals are competed using the set system, with each competitor shooting three arrow sets against one another. However, at Face 2 Face, if a tie occurs it forces an immediate shoot-off to decide the set. Each set is worth 1 point, and the first archer to four points wins. The event, live-streamed throughout the entire competition, allowed archery fans from around the world to embrace this unique, high-profile competition in Amsterdam.
Duncan Busby (GBR) and Reo Wilde (USA) were on top off their game the whole weekend, so it came as no surprise that the two met in the gold medal match. Over the 240 competition arrows shot over the weekend, Wilde had an average of 9.91 points per arrow and Busby had an average of 9.83 points. Wilde’s last international performance was at the World Cup Final in Tokyo where he finished second to Braden Gellenthien (USA).
Wilde said he was ready for another international win after being edged out in Japan, and that is exactly what he did. He did not drop a single point and shot a perfect 150 out of 150. In match play, Wilde took the first three sets, leading Busby 3-0; his opponent rallied, putting one point on the board in a shoot-off, but Wilde clinched the gold medal with a 4-1 victory in the match.
Braden Gellenthien, USA’s World Cup Final champion, finished third, claiming bronze by defeating U.S. teammate Dave Cousins.
The defending champion Ivana Buden (CRO) came in to the gold medal match fully confident and opened strong, winning the first two sets and bringing it to 2-0 (29-28, 28-28 and taking the shoot-off). After her rocky start, Naomi Ruth Jones (GBR) regained her composure and tied the match by winning the next two sets (29-29 and the shoot-off, 29-28). It seemed that the more experienced Buden could not get back into her zone. Jones won the fifth set with a 29 to Buden’s 28 for (3-2) lead. Buden had to win the next set to stay in the match but Jones shot a perfect 30 to Buden’s 29. Jones won the match (4-2). Kristina Berger (GER) made it to the podium with the bronze medal.
Junior world record holder Carlo Schmitz (GER) meant business coming into the gold medal match against Sebastian Rohberg (GER). He stormed to a three straight sets win (30-28, 28-27, 30-30 and the shoot-off). He needed just one more set to take the match. In the fourth set, both Germans shot a 30 but Rohberg won the shoot-off, bringing the match to 3-1. Schmitz didn’t seem to be impressed and shattered Rohberg’s hopes by shooting a strong 29 against 26 winning the match (4-1).
Another junior, Sjef Van Den Berg from the Netherlands, finished in third place.
The Recurve Women’s gold medal match was between youngster Annemarie Der Kindern (NED) and World Field Champion Elena Richter (GER). Encouraged by the home crowd, Der Kindern started with a solid 29 against Richter’s 25 and took the lead 1-0. In the next set Richter came back strong and shot a perfect 30 while her opponent only managed a 28 (1-1). She went on winning the next set, taking the lead in the match (2-1). Much to the delight of the home crowd, Der Kindern picked up the pace and won three straight sets, taking the match 4-2.
Anne Marie Laursen (DEN) won the bronze by defeating Louise Laursen (DEN).