PETALING JAYA: Composure and ability to adapt to the weather conditions are keys to victory in archery.
And these factors, according to coach Marzuki Zakaria, are the fundamentals in deciding whether S. Suresh who won the 2019 World Para Archery Championships in Holland, will be a gold medal prospect at the Tokyo Paralympics.
The 28-year-old Suresh has been touted by the Youth and Sports Ministry as one of the medal prospects in the Games which starts today. Besides Suresh, the other archer taking part in Tokyo is Wiro Julin who qualified after winning silver at the 2019 Asian Para Archery Championships in Bangkok.
The archers began their training at the Dream Island Archery Park yesterday, and Marzuki was quick to voice his concern.
“Archery is a sport that requires great mental strength to hit the target well and ability to adapt to the weather and competition conditions quickly.
“We started training on Aug 23, and both archers – Suresh and Wiro – are adapting to the conditions. We will have few more days of practice until competition day, which starts on Aug 27. Both boys are ready,” said Marzuki.
“The weather is hot but windy too, so we are doing our best to adjust and make sure that they are prepared on competition day.
“Both are competing in their first Paralympics so there will be some nerves and we know what needs to be done to help them keep their composure, especially since everyone is expecting them to do well. They should not worry about fulfilling expectations. They have to just do their best.
“Wiro is also focused although this is his first major competition as he has not even participated in the SEA or Asian Para Games.”
Suresh, who is ranked third in the world, is scheduled for action on Friday in the ranking round of the recurve event.
Sarawak’s 27-year-old Wiro will compete in the ranking round of the men’s compound on the same day.