Dorji Dema the first female archer competing among men is one of the 18 contenders for the best archer’s title in the on-going Paro open archery tournament.

She made it to the top 18 after hitting 22 kareys, including three bull’s eyes and two dobjeys in the 45 rounds. Her team lost in the quarterfinal.

Hundreds of people came to witness the top 18 archers’ shootout at the Paro archery range yesterday. She managed to hit nine kareys including two dobjeys in 15 rounds securing the 8th position. Choki Langkong took the first position after hitting 16 kareys in 15 rounds.

All top 18 archers are those who managed to hit the highest number of kareys in 45 rounds during the league round.

Dorji Dema said she has gained confidence, experience and knowledge about archery, especially in counting the points.

“As we play with different teams and players, it helped me build a network.”

She said that one of the women who never played archery bought a bow and asked her to teach her play archery. Two of her friends have also asked her to inform them if there are any archery matches so that they could form a team and participate.

“I am happy that I have inspired women to play archery,” she said.

Tournament organiser Ugyen Dorji said that, to enter in the top 18, an archer has to hit above 27 kareys in the 45 rounds. “However, Dorji Dema being the only lady, we decided to give her a chance to compete for the title.”

Ugyen Dorji said he has promised to give her a special prize. “The condition I made was the number of kareys she hit in 15 rounds.”

All spectators at the archery range came to witness the female archer competing for the best archer. “More than 30 percent were women and all came to cheer for Dorji Dema,” he said.

The finals will be played on December 17.

Nim Dorji