RIO DE JANEIRO – The national archery team not only faces the battle with other
teams but also has to overcome the unstable ground and unpredictable wind condition
at the venue for Rio Olympic Games which begins, Friday.
National coach Lee Jae Hyung said the unstable ground at the venue could
effect the national trio’s performances in the recurve event and the wind
condition due to the stadium’s structure.
However, he said, all teams faced the same predicament and had voiced their
concerns with the organisers.
“Well, it’s too late but have to face the situation,” said the Korean coach
after the team’s training session in Sambodromo, about 43km from here, today.
He said the archers had to stand firm on the ground to get the right
position before making an attempt on the board.
The coach who has been training the national team for 15 years, had been
sizing up the team in the past eight days during training in the venue, to
overcome the shortfall and hoping the national trio would not be distracted.
The team will move in the qualifying round tomorrow to decide the individual
and team ranking before taking on the stage the following day.
Archery is among the medal prospects for Malaysia in Rio after having
qualified for three Olympic Games without winning a medal and Lee believes this
is about to change in Rio.
The national trio will be led by 25-year-old Khairul Anuar Mohamad, Haziq
Kamaruddin, 23, and 21-year-old Muhammad Akmal.
Khairul reached the London Olympic quarter-finals in the individual event
and had set a personal target of finishing on the podium in Rio.
The event only features 12 teams and the three archers are also in the
Malaysia never reached the team semi-finals at the Olympics. At the 2008
Bejing Games, the nationai side lost 213-218 to Italy at the quater-finals and
in the last edition in London, four years ago, Malaysia lost 211-216 to Mexico
in the first round.
Haziq and Akmal helped Malaysia reach the Rio Olympics after beating world
No. 11, Germany 6-2 to finish third in the Final Qualification Tournament (FQT)
in Antalya, Turkey, recently. – Bernama