The Indian women's recurve team, consisting of Laishram Bombayla Devi, Deepika Kumari and Chekrovolu Swuro, are having a dream run in the World archery championship at Turin (Italy).
On Wednesday, the trio earned India three Olympic quota places by beating France in the first round and annihilating defending champion Korea in the semifinals by 216 points to 212 to make the final for the first time.
The best finish by an Indian women's team was achieved at the Madrid Worlds in 2005, where it ended fourth.
The failure of the Indian men's recurve team was the biggest dampener.
The team, comprising Rahul Banerjee, Tarundeep Rai and Jayanta Talukdar, suffered a narrow loss at the hands of China in the first round at 215-216.
Luckily, India had another chance to qualify when the Olympic Games' host Great Britain won its first round to move within the top eight. Since the host was already allotted three berths for the Games, two best first round losing teams got another chance to play-off. There too India came a cropper.
Indian women managed to prevail over France at 216-213 to sew up the quota places. After achieving the first objective, the team played with gay abandon and won easily against Denmark in the quarterfinals with a score of 203-197. This brought India against World champion Korea in the semifinals. With nothing to lose, the Indians shot like champions to lead Korea 55-53 in the first end of six arrows. The defending champion did recover to win the second end at 54-53, but failed to match the spirit of the Indians in the next two sets of six arrows each.
India won the third end 52-51 and the final end 56-54 for a total of 216-212.
It will play Italy in the final on July 10. Italy outplayed China 221-213 in the semifinals. Korea and China will play for the bronze medal.
Korea will clash with France in the men's final match as Mexico and Italy will play the bronze medal tie.
The mixed Indian pair of Jayanta Talukdar and Deepika Kumari lost to Poland at 148-150 in the quarterfinals after winning against Ukraine in the first round.