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Patrick Huston makes early exit and admits he underperformed

Archery

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Frustrating times: Patrick Huston had issues with his equipment. Credit: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

Frustrating times: Patrick Huston had issues with his equipment. Credit: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

Getty Images

Frustrating times: Patrick Huston had issues with his equipment. Credit: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

There is a loneliness to standing 70 metres from an archery target, particularly when you do not have complete confidence in your equipment.

For Belfast archer Patrick Huston, that lack of trust was a barrier that he could not clear as he fell to defeat in the round of 64 for the men’s individual.

Despite qualifying in 25th spot, Huston was well beaten by Brazil’s Marcus D’Almeida, 7-1, as he saw his Olympic dreams ended.

And the 25-year-old admitted that falling well short of his best while on the biggest stage would be a bitter pill to swallow.

He said: “I’m pretty seriously unhappy with the way I’ve performed there. It was an underperformance.

“I’ve had some equipment issues in the past. Not being able to trust the kit to perform and be able to come in with a bank of consistent groupings over an extended period of time does detract slightly.

“Sometimes it just doesn’t happen. When it’s at the biggest stage there is, that’s not the most enjoyable.”

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The soaring temperatures in Tokyo have been particularly brutal on the archers, with Russia’s Svetlana Gomboeva having collapsed on day one.

Adapting has not been easy for the GB archers, but Huston was frustrated at the way he struggled to cope with the strong winds, a side effect of the tropical storm that has led to the rowing schedule being rearranged here.

He added: “It’s been very hot this week, I’ve definitely struggled a bit in these conditions. It would have been nice to have the opportunity over the past couple of years to do more hot-weather conditioning.

“The closest we have was potentially the World Cup in Paris but it turned out to be cold all week.

“It was very windy today. Normally I’m pretty strong in the wind, the arrows just didn’t land in the middle.”

Huston’s exit leaves just James Woodgate and Bryony Pitman of the GB archery contingent, the last hopes to end the long wait for a medal - Alison Williamson was the last back in 2004.

But after just two archers qualified for Rio five years ago, including Huston, the fact a full team made it this time around made a big difference according to the 25-year-old.

He added: “It’s fantastic to have a team with me. Rio was a very lonely experience without having a team there with me. It was just myself and Naomi [Folkard].

“After Rio, I said I wasn’t coming back alone so we’ve brought an entire men’s team and an entire women’s team, which is fantastic.

“It’s been really enjoyable to have my friends here and be able to compete and enjoy this experience with them. That’s been a big highlight for me.”


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