Korean coach for India's archers hopeful for medal in Beijing

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Kolkata, Aug 2 (UNI) The Korean coach for Beijing bound India's archery squad today said a win in knock-out stage would surely fetch a medal for women team in the Olympics.

''I have been saying them that you are in good shape and targeting well and your duty is to hit the bull's eye in Beijing and you win a medal'', coach Lee Wong Woo told reporters in broken english.

Addressing a meet the press, organised by Calcutta Sports Journalists club here, Woo said the archers have been doing well at training centre at SAI here. They only to focus on target in Beijing and that would clinch the issue in the competition, he said.

Archery Association of India (AAI) secretary-general Paresh Nath Mukherjee, who will accompany the four archers- Mangal Singh Champia, Dola Banerjee(28), Laishram Bombayla Devi(24) and Vardhineni Pranitha (18) as manager, was hoping a medal in women team championship.

'' You see they (women) are regular hitting average 219.5, a medal winning score in any world class competition and my claim for a medal in Beijing Olympics is not a day-dream but based on reality'', Mukherjee told UNI on the sidelines. He also added anything was possible at final stage when an arhcer needed most to remain calm and composed. He said there was no derth of equipment, as all archers have two sets gadgets to gear up for final show down.

He said fifty per cent of winning a medal would be known between August 9 and 15 when ranking would be decided for 70 mts target with 72 arrows scoring 64.

He said the team would fly on August four and reach on the following day and the squad would be practicing in Beijing's environemnt.

Seniormost archer Dola Banerjee, who had been member for Athens Olympics and would lead the squad from the front, said chances of winning a medal was brightened this time because of some positive favourable factors.

'' Now I know what I have to do in Beijing after Athens experience and my focus is to win a medal for the country'', Dola, who takes all load in women's three-member team, said.

Laishram Bombayla Devi was also egging to perform in Beijing rahter than speculate things and said '' I have nothing to loose but to win in my Olympic debut''.

Youngest archer of the sqaud Vardhineni Pranitha, a class XII student, said she was taught well by the Korean coach to score and hoping to stick to his instruction when she would be challenged.

''Challenge is steeply high in Beijing as home team has advantage and South Korean, Chinese Taipai and Italy are some of the nations which have traditional winning habits in the global competition,'' she observed.


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