Australia’s Largest Paralympic Archery Team in 40 Years Announced

Australia’s largest Paralympic Games archery team in 40 years has been officially announced, marking a significant milestone in the athletes’ remarkable journeys. This announcement highlights their dedication, resilience, and determination that have brought them to this prestigious point.

The six Para-archers named for the Paris Paralympics are:

  • Jonathon Milne: A bronze medallist at Rio 2016, Jonathon will be competing in his third Paralympic Games. His perseverance and skill have established him as a consistent contender on the world stage.
  • Taymon Kenton-Smith: Selected for his second Paralympic Games, Taymon has shown significant tenacity and improvement, building on his previous experiences.
  • Amanda Jennings: A Rio 2016 Para-canoe silver medallist and two-time Paralympian, Amanda transitioned to archery after Tokyo 2020. Her adaptability and competitive spirit underscore her commitment to excelling in multiple sports.
  • Ameera Lee: After narrowly missing selection for Tokyo 2020, Ameera’s determination and hard work have earned her a place on the team, making her Paralympic debut in Paris.
  • Melissa Tanner: A former canoeist, Melissa will make her Paralympic debut in Paris. Her transition to archery demonstrates her versatility and dedication to achieving her Paralympic ambitions.
  • Patrick French: A rising star in the sport, Patrick will also make his Paralympic debut. His rapid progression in archery is a testament to his talent and relentless pursuit of excellence.

The team had initially secured seven quota spots; however, reigning W1 men’s World Champion Christopher Davis had to withdraw due to injury and recently underwent shoulder surgery. Despite this setback, the remaining team members are poised for strong performances.

Australia’s history in Paralympic archery includes three gold medals—one in 1960 and two in 1968. Jonathon Milne’s bronze medal in 2016 remains Australia’s only podium finish in this sport over the past four decades. This year’s team aims to build on that legacy.

National Para-archery coach Ricci Cheah has been instrumental in the resurgence of Para-archery in Australia. His leadership has been crucial in developing the team’s talent and potential.

“Jono is a strong medal contender, given his current top percentile performance,” Cheah stated. “Our mixed teams, particularly Jono with either Ameera or Mel in compound events, have a strong chance for a team medal. In the recurve mixed teams, there’s potential to reach the quarter-finals or even semi-finals, provided AJ and Taymon perform well.”

Coach Cheah’s commitment to the growth of Para-archery extends beyond individual competitions. His focus on building a robust coaching staff and developing a pipeline of talent ensures the continued success and expansion of the program.

The journey of these athletes reflects their unwavering dedication and the support of the entire Australian archery community. Their selection for the Paris Paralympics underscores their individual achievements and the collective effort of coaches, support staff, and fans.

As they prepare to compete on the world stage, Archery Australia, along with the entire nation, stands united in their support. The collective spirit of Australia will be cheering them on, reflecting the resilience, dedication, and excellence that define Australian sport.

Stay updated with all the latest news and support our Para-archers as they prepare for the Paris Paralympics. Together, let’s cheer them on to victory.

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