Gold hopes turn to sil­ver

New Straits Times - - Sport -

JUWAIDI Mazuki suf­fered a dou­ble blow af­ter set­tling for sec­ondbest in both the men’s com­pound in­di­vid­ual and mixed team events at the Archery Asia Cup in Bangkok yes­ter­day.

With Khairul Anuar Mo­hamad also suf­fer­ing a de­feat in the men’s re­curve in­di­vid­ual fi­nal, it was a day of missed op­por­tu­ni­ties for the na­tional archers in ac­cru­ing three sil­ver medals.

Juwaidi had a chance of a rare dou­ble vic­tory but started the day in ag­o­nis­ing fash­ion when he lost the in­di­vid­ual fi­nal by the nar­row­est of mar­gins, 147-146, to Iran’s Es­maeil Ebadi.

A bronze medal­list in this tour­na­ment last year, Juwaidi was al­ways play­ing catch-up to Ebadi af­ter fall­ing a point be­hind at the con­clu­sion of the sec­ond end.

Ebadi matched Juwaidi’s score point-for-point for the re­main­ing nine ar­rows to main­tain his ad­van­tage to the end.

Juwaidi, how­ever, had a shot at re­demp­tion in the mixed team event when he re­sumed his Sea Games gold medal-win­ning part­ner­ship with Fatin Nur­fate­hah Mat Salleh.

Juwaidi and Fatin trounced Bangladesh 156-141 in the first round, downed Viet­nam 148-144 in the quar­ter-fi­nals be­fore edg­ing Rus­sia 150-149 to book a spot in the fi­nal.

But the Malaysian pair paid for a poor start in the fi­nal af­ter fail­ing four points be­hind at the half­way stage and could not bridge the gap to Tai­wan’s Chen Hsiang-Hsuan and Wu Ting-Ting, who won 152-150.

Two-time Olympian Khairul was de­nied vic­tory in the re­curve fi­nal by Tai­wan’s Deng Yu-Cheng 6-2.

Khairul, seek­ing to win the Asia Cup for the first time, lost the first two sets 29-27 and 28-27 af­ter strug­gling to find his range.

But three con­sec­u­tive 10s helped seal a 30-26 win in the third set, only for Deng to re­spond with the same se­ries in the match-clinch­ing fourth set, 3029.

Khairul was back in ac­tion in the re­curve mixed team event with Nur Afisa Ab­dul Halil but they were elim­i­nated by Kaza­khstan 60 in the quar­ter-fi­nals af­ter beat­ing Iran 6-2 in the first round.

In the shootout for the men’s com­pound in­di­vid­ual bronze, Rus­sian Alexan­der Dam­baev downed Malaysian M. Khambeswaran 10-9 in a tie-break af­ter the match ended 143-143.

The com­pe­ti­tion con­cludes to­day with the men’s and women’s team events in both the com­pound and re­curve dis­ci­plines. Devin­der Singh

Juwaidi Mazuki

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