Javier draws praise from US foe
LONDON—For archer Mark Javier, the best salve for a vanquished warrior’s confidence is a word of encouragement from the victor.
After world No. 1 Ellison Brady dealt Javier a stunning 7-1 defeat in the first round of their men’s individual 70-meter knockout duel at the London Olympics here, the American walked up to the Filipino, put his arm around him and congratulated him for making the match “really outstanding.”
The softspoken ace from Dumaguete City thanked the American and his coach, waved to the appreciative gallery, and then walked away toward the archers’ lounge at Lord’s Cricket Ground, his second successive Olympic stint in tatters.
“He (Brady) said I made him work hard to really go for the 10s and thanked me for a well-fought match,” said the 31-year-old Javier, who shot well but failed to slay the ghost of his similar first-round exit in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
“Ganun talaga sa laban (That’s the way it is in this kind of a match),” Javier later told team leader Terry Lim of the Philippine Archers’ National Alliance. “Hindi mo masabi kung ano ang magiging resulta (You can’t really tell how it will play out).
Javier’s statement became a prophesy of sort when the hitherto irrepressible Brady, also the reigning Pan American champion, lost in the next round to the unrated Taylor Worth of Australia, 4-6.
Lim said the performances of Javier and the also-ran Rachelle Anne Cabral showed that archery can send more Filipinos to the Olympiad given more international exposure. (Cabral bowed to world No. 10 Anna Stepanova of Russia by a similar scoreline Tuesday.)
“Mark put up a good fight, and so did Rachelle,” Lim said of the pair, who qualified to these Games by placing in the top six of an Olympic qualifier in Ogden, Utah, in June. “It’s just a matter of getting proper support for them.”