Sets, shoot-offs and more: Archery at the Olympics, explained

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The Archery competition begins at the Tokyo Olympics on Friday with all four Indian archers, including World No. 1 Deepika Kumari, in action. Here’s what you need to know about the event:

The format

After the initial ranking round, which will be held to determine seedings for all the events, the archery competition at the Olympics is held in the knockout format, with the loser of each round (except the semifinals) exiting the event.

The events

There are three types of events — individual, team and mixed. While Archery World Cups include both the compound and recurve categories, the Olympics only includes the recurve category. Recurve archers shoot at targets — with yellow, red, blue, black and white rings, scoring 10 for the innermost yellow ring and 1 for the outermost white one — set 70m away.

Individual Recurve

The archers participate in a qualification round of 72 arrows to determine their seedings. The ranking round is followed by the elimination rounds (three rounds, followed by the quarterfinals and semifinals), and the bronze medal and gold medal matches.

These matches are decided using a “set system”, where each archer shoots three arrows in the individual event. An archer receives two points for winning each set, and in case both competitors finish the set with equal scores, both receive one point each. The first archer to win six points wins the match. If a match is tied on five points, then the winner is decided through a single arrow shoot-off, where the arrow that lands closest to bullseye wins.

Team/mixed team Recurve

Team events comprise three archers of the same gender, while mixed team events comprise one archer from each gender. The teams are seeded on the basis of the total scores of each athlete in the individual qualification round. After the first round, the teams advance to the quarterfinals.

In regular team events, a team receives two points for winning a set, which comprises six arrows — two arrows per archer in a team. Similarly, in mixed team events, a team receives two points for winning a set, which consists of four arrows, two arrows per archer. The first team to win five set points wins the match. A shoot-off is conducted in case the competing teams are tied on four set points, wherein every archer in a team shoots one arrow each. The team with the higher total wins.

The final round

In both recurve and compound events, the eliminations continue till there are four athletes remaining to compete in the semifinals. The losers of the two semifinals then compete in a bronze medal match, while the winners of the two semifinals compete in the gold medal match.



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