Tuks archer Wian Roux made sure he provisionally qualified for the Youth Olympic Games over the weekend when he won a silver medal in archery at the African Youth Games in Algeria.
Even though Roux and his teammates won a bronze medal in the team competition, he could not help but feel slightly disappointed.
‘To finish second means I have not won,’ he says.
For now, I will accept winning a silver medal, but I know I’m capable of doing better. What excites me is that I have learnt a lot while competing. Hopefully, it will stand me in good stead in future competitions,’ said Roux who is a learner at Hoërskool Menlopark in Pretoria.
Tuks Archery chairman and Rio Paralympian, Shaun Anderson is genuinely excited about Roux’s performance. ‘Wian’s main goal was to provisionally qualify for the Games [in Buenos Aires, Argentine], and he managed to do so. It proves that he has got big match temperament.’
Roux describes his final as being a humdinger.
‘I wasn’t off to the best start, which is never good. Archery can be mentally exhausting and the moment you start doubting your abilities you’re in trouble. In other sports, especially where there is a ball involved, you are able to step away to regroup and refocus, when things tend not to go according to plan, but not in archery. You have to remain focused for the duration of the competition while battling to keep your emotions intact.’
As for Roux, he managed to remain calm which improved his accuracy. With one round remaining the scores were tied at four all.
‘Unfortunately I shot one bad arrow which led to me losing out on winning the gold medal. The positive element I can take from the competition is that I now realise that I’m good enough to compete internationally. Finishing second left me hungrier to succeed, but I have to be realistic.
‘There is a lot of hard work that awaits me,’ said Roux who finished 33rd during last year’s Junior World Championships.
Roux loves archery as it is, because it does not require physical strength.
‘It’s just you, your bow and the target. The main requirement in our sport is concentration. If one arrow goes off target, its important to forget about it and focus on your next shot immediately. The moment you start wondering about what went wrong that’s when you start doubting your abilities. Then you’re doomed.’