x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Olympics: Al Aryani faces difficult task to reach trap final

The Ras Al Khaimah shooter trails the leader by 10 shots as he enters the final qualification rounds for the Olympic competition.

Dhaher Al Aryani competes in the men's trap shooting at Royal Artillery Barracks.
Dhaher Al Aryani competes in the men's trap shooting at Royal Artillery Barracks.

LONDON // Dhaher Al Aryani will continue his unlikely quest for a place in this afternoon's final of the trap competition at London 2012 when the qualification phase restarts this morning.

The task facing the 39-year-old shooter from Ras Al Khaimah to progress further is as good as impossible after he tallied a total of 65 successful shots on the opening day of competition at the Royal Artillery Barracks yesterday.

That score left him trailing Michael Diamond, the top-placed shooter from Australia who is part of the same six-man competition squad as Al Aryani, by 10 shots.

Al Aryani, who was a surprise qualifier for the Games, started the competition with modest aspirations, and has probably not been helped by the cool and occasionally damp weather in east London.

"Four degrees, wind and rain does not really suit Emirati people," Rustam Yambulatov, the UAE trap coach, said before the shooting competition started at the Games.

"If the Olympic Games becomes hot, Dhaher will shoot well."

While Yambulatov's current charge might have struggled to cause an impression yesterday on the leaders, one of his former proteges did fare more strongly in the cause of an Arabian Gulf nation.

Fehaid Al Deehani, who Yambulatov coached during his last post in charge of shooting in Kuwait, is well placed to compete for a medal in today's final rounds, having shot 74 targets on day one.

The Kuwaiti shooter, who also figured prominently in the double trap competition last week, won a bronze for his country in Sydney 12 years ago, just at the start of Yambulatov's spell coaching in the country.

 

pradley@thenational.ae

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