Archery instructor collects bronze in men’s compound
KUALA LUMPUR — Under gathering darkness, Paul Marton Dela Cruz came away with a bronze medal for Philippines in archery Wednesday.
The 30-year-old Dela Cruz, a full-time archery and instructor, said he didn’t expect to make it to the bronze medal match because of his dismal performance in the first two ends.
“I just told myself not to give up and continue to fight,” said Dela Cruz as he tried to calm his nerves for his first individual medal in the Southeast Asian Games in this verdant, humid city.
He matched up with top-ranked Mohd Juwaidi Mazuki of Malaysia in the semifinals, lost and fell in the bronze medal match against yet another strong hometown bet Ruslan Zulfadhli
“He showed determination and I was happy that on Day 1 we were able to medal,” said head coach Clint Sayo. “It was a good fight in the bronze medal round.”
Indeed, Dela Cruz finished at the same score as Zulfadhli (144-144), forcing a nerve-wracking shootout for the medal at the Synthetic Turf Field inside National Sports Council KL Sports City.
“It was overwhelming. I was very nervous,” said Dela Cruz, who fired a 10 while the hugely favorite Malaysian had a nine.
Dela Cruz started in recurve — the Olympic archery event — in 2003 but shifted to compound. He is an instructor at FR Sevilla Archery Range, home of the Philippine Team.
The Philippines will have more chances of nailing a gold in the next few days in compound event with team competitions for men’s and women’s on tap.
Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of Cebudailynews. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.