Off target Archers now rank outsiders after Brits struggle on opening day
01:55 GMT, 28 July 2012
Great Britain's chances of a medal in the women’s archery were hit by a faulty bow during a disappointing ranking round at Lord’s.
Naomi Folkard was Britain’s highest-ranked participant in 42nd place as the archers earned their seedings for the individual and team events.
The Kidderminster-based 28-year-old scored 637 from a maximum of 720, with six-time Olympian Alison Williamson 47th on 629 and Amy Oliver 57th with 608.
Best of British: Naomi Folkard fared best on what was a poor day overall for the home contingent
Great Britain finished seeded 11th out of 12 nations in the team event, which takes place on Sunday, leaving them to face Russia in the round of 16 and, potentially, third seeds Chinese Taipei in the quarter-finals.
South Korea’s Bo Bae Ki and Ya-Ting Tan of Chinese Taipei led the rankings, tied on 671 points.
Rotherham-born Oliver, the world No 37, claimed that a technical fault with her bow contributed to her lowly position.
‘Halfway through the round I found that my bow wasn’t working correctly,’ she said. ‘I had to change it and then after that I felt better and they were going where I was aiming them. After that I shot really well so at least I know it isn’t me.
‘It was a little bit distracting because I didn’t know why I wasn’t shooting as well as I have been all week. I was feeling strong but the arrows weren’t going where they were meant to.’
Williamson, who became the third British Olympian to appear in six Games, insisted the home trio could still make it on to the podium.
Add them up: Great Britain's Alison Williamson checks her arrows during the ranking round
Williamson, 40, and Folkard, along with Charlotte Burgess, just missed out on a medal in Beijing four years ago, losing by two points to France in the bronze medal match.
Williamson’s bronze medal in Athens eight years ago was the last British archery medal. Despite their poor showing on Friday, she has clearly not discounted the prospect of winning another.
‘We’ve done it now. We can’t change the results,’ said Williamson. ‘Most people, when they look at their score at the end, will think, “I could have done this or that” but that’s archery.
‘If we reach the level we can then we’re more than capable of a medal. If we’re all shooting our best on the day we can do it.’
Folkard confessed to also being left frustrated at the home of cricket, having not shot to her best. But, like Williamson, she insisted there was still every reason to be positive.
Better luck next time: Amy Oliver suffered a fault in her bow
As well as meeting the Russians in the team event, Folkard will line up against Russia’s Kristina Timofeeva in the singles and is content with her frame of mind ahead of those matches.
‘The score wasn’t ideal, so I’m a bit disappointed, but I kept going through the right mental processes and I’m pleased with the way I shot,’ she said.
‘There were just a couple of ends where I wasn’t good enough. I have a day to work on it then we go again in the team event.
‘You have to be confident going into the head to heads and if you’re feeling good that’s going to give you more confidence.
‘Feeling good about my game, for me, gives more confidence than just a good score. I know I’m shooting really well, I just have to put it all together.’