Fri, 11 Jun 2004

RI archers compete in German GP

Eva C. Komandjaja, Jakarta

Three Indonesians are going to take part in the International Archery Grand Prix in Germany from June 16 to June 20 as part of preparations for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.

Kuswantoro, Lockonecko and Rina Dewi Puspitasari will compete in the 70-meter Olympic-round category in the grand prix, along with world archers from other 34 countries, according to an official from the Indonesian Archery Association (Perpani). The final will be held in Turkey in July.

For Perpani, results in the field will determine whether Kuswantoro or Lockonecko is eligible to accompany Olympics-bound Rina, who secured her ticket in last year's Asian Championships in Myanmar.

Permadi Sandra also qualified after the championships but Perpani has decided to drop him on the grounds that he has since performed below par.

National team coach Donald Pandiangan said on Wednesday that with many world-class archers participating in the tournament, it would be a good opportunity for the Indonesian hopefuls to test their skills ahead of the Olympics.

Lockonecko's best score is currently 333 points, compared with Kuswantoro's 330, while their female compatriot, Rina, has chalked up a personal best of 337.

Donald hoped his archers would reach a score of around 340 to be competitive in Athens.

While refusing to divulge any specific target for the team's participation in Germany, Donald hoped his archers could make it to the semifinals.

Apart from the International Grand Prix, Perpani will also send five junior archers to the Asian Grand Prix in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on the same date.

While Perpani is monitoring closely Lockonecko and Kuswantoro, it might be able to take both to Athens if hopes for another place materialize.

Chief de mission of the Indonesian Olympic Games team Indra Kartasasmita said earlier that Indonesia had a chance to add another archer to the list on the basis of the "continental standby" rule from the International Archery Federation.