Several TuksArchery archers took part in the Shanghai Hyundai Archery World Cup, which took place from 26 April to 1 May. This was the second stage of the world cup and UP archers Seppie Cilliers, Vivien de Kerk, Jeanine van Kradenburg, Gerda Roux, Danielle Wentzel, Patrick Roux and Marco di Matteo represented the South African team.
UP is one of the top archery clubs in the country and they are an affiliate of the South African National Archery Association. Van Kradenburg, one of the archers pegged to do well for the South African women, managed to finish fifth overall. The SA team will head to Turkey next month to compete in the third world cup stage, where UP members hope to gain as much experience as possible before the USSA tournament later this year. Van Kradenburg took some time to reflect on her Shanghai experience.
How did you do find the recent experience of competing in the Shanghai Archery World Cup?
What an amazing experience to travel! It was my first time [going] to China and I must confess that I was very worried about their food menus, but we stayed in a good hotel that served an oriental and western menu. The size of Shanghai is something I have never seen before.
How do you feel about your personal performance at the world cup?
I had a great tournament. I ranked eighth and after eliminations I finished fifth overall, losing by two points to the current world number one in the quarter-finals. My preparation was spot on. I was in top form and [I] am very happy with my archery at the moment. I feel I can still improve and [I am] looking forward to shooting in Antalya, Turkey, in a month’s time.
How do you think world performances like these help create interest in the sport?
We are lucky that Afgri came on board as our main and big sponsor. Without sponsors we would not be able to show the world that we are equal to them when it comes to archery. I reached almost 4000 people on my Facebook page and the total likes grew by almost 10% after my good ranking, so good performance definitely spikes interest.
What are the most valuable skills that TuksArchery has helped you to develop?
The very strong support circle [provided by] TuksArchery has has been instrumental to our recent success on the world archery scene. To be able to shoot and practice in a safe and world-class environment is something we, as Tuks Archers, really appreciate and value.
After representing SA in the second stage of the world cup, what are your other objectives as an archer?
We are competing in a month’s time in the third world cup stage in Turkey, so I would like to rank in the top eight again and shoot my best in eliminations to see myself finish on the podium. If all goes well, team SA will hope to see an individual archer or mixed team in the world cup finals later this year.
Do you think this experience holds the team in good stead looking ahead to the USSAs?
Definitely. We are very strong as a team, not just the Tuks woman’s team, but TuksArchery as a whole. For Tuks archers there is no “I” in team. We support, care and celebrate together.
Image: TuksArchery’s Facebook page