MacQueen upsets Rolly in Fazza final

Nathan MacQueen staved off a comeback from experienced para archer Alberto Simonelli, nickname Rolly, in the compound men’s open final at the 2017 edition of the Fazza International Para Archery Competition, 142-140, to take gold and lead Britain’s charge at the top of the tournament medal table.

The British team finished with a total of four medals.

MacQueen and women’s W1 Paralympic Champion Jessica Stretton, who opened the event with a world record, each took gold; Jodie Grinham was runner-up in the compound women’s open competition and in the recurve women’s open event Hazel Chaisty had bronze. Stretton’s gold came in a mixed men’s and women’s competition, in which she beat Finland’s Jean Pierre Antonios, a world and European champion, in the final.

“Can’t believe it. Happy doesn’t cover it. Bagged my first international medal and did it in style, beating the world number one,” MacQueen wrote on Facebook after his final against Simonelli.

The Brit was already three points ahead in the match when his Italian opponent was hit with a gust of wind at exactly the wrong moment. Simonelli’s eighth arrow landed in the five, the outermost scoring ring on the compound matchplay target face. It put Rolly in a hole but gave his shooting something of a boost and he finished the match with seven straight 10s.

MacQueen, though, matched him through the fourth end and, although looser in the closing series, did enough to stay ahead until the end of regulation, winning the match and tournament, 142-140. New para world rankings were released following the event, in which Nathan rose to seventh.

Brazilian archer Jane Karla Gogel won compound women’s open gold, the recurve women’s open competition was taken by Zaman Al-Saedi of Iraq and Turkish para athlete Oguzhan Polat won the recurve men’s open event.

The 3rd Fazza International Para Archery Competition ran 26-30 January 2017 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.