Bangladesh’s premier archer Ruman Shana was named as the Breakthrough Athlete of The Year 2019 by World Archery following his historic bronze medal success in the men’s individual recurve event at the World Championships held in Netherlands in June 2019.
Bangladesh archery team’s Germen coach Martin Frederick was also awarded as the Breakthrough Coach for Shana’s success, which paved the way for a spot in Olympics 2020 being the first archer from the country.
The awards were decided by a combination of public and expert votes held throughout January 2020.
The names of winners were announced by World Archery on February 9 after the Indoor Archery World Series Finals in Las Vegas, USA.
For the 2020 Tokyo Olympics berth, 24-year-old Shana beat two-time world champion Kim Woojin of South Korea in the fourth round of the 2019 Hyundai World Archery Championships held in Netherland’s Hertogenbosch.
Shana competed against James Lutz of USA, An San of South Korea, Valentina Acosta of Colombia, Anders Faugstad of Norway and Alexis Ruiz of USA to win the award while coach Martin Frederick competed against Kisik Lee of USA and Sally Park of Bhutan.
Shana was also selected for men’s Recurve award due to his extraordinary performances throughout 2019.
‘I’m so happy. I competed against the world’s best archers and clinched my first international award,’ Shana told New Age.
‘It is a great achievement for me. I don’t know how to explain it. My coach, parents and other family members are also happy. It will inspire me a lot in the future, especially, for Tokyo Olympics,’ he added.
Shana made a new history in the 13th South Asian Games in Nepal on December securing a total of three gold medals, one in singles events and two in team events.
He shared two gold medals with his team-mates Eti Khatun and Sohel Rana in SA Games.
Shana also clinched his first gold in Asia Cup-World Ranking Archery Tournament [Stage-3] in Philippines on September 2019.
It was his third individual international gold after gold medals in the 1st Asian Archery Grand Pix’2014 in Thailand and in the International Archery Tournament’2017 in Kyrgyzstan.
Coach Frederick, meanwhile, acted as an architect of Bangladesh’s success in archery.
‘I am so surprised and excited. I am also happy for Ruman [Shana]. Both of us are honoured as we have done something for Bangladesh,’ he said.
‘It is not only our achievement, but it is also the achievement of our full national team, coaching staff, federation and sponsors,’ added the 51-year old coach.
Brady Ellison of USA won recurve men’s title, Kang Chae Young of South Korea won recurve women’s, Mike Schloesser of Netherlands won Compound men’s, Sara Lopez of Colombia won Compound women’s, Ben Thompson of USA won Para men, Alim Nur Syahidah of Singapore won Para women’s and Karla Cabrera of Philippines clinched Judge of 2019.
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