Razan Baker | Arab News
Published — Friday 18 July 2008
Last Update 18 July 2008 3:00 am
JEDDAH: Call it impossible dream but Saudi shooter Saeed Al-Mutairi intends to not just participate but win in the Beijing Olympics next month.
Qualified for the skeet event, Al-Mutairi is to make his fourth appearance in the Olympics having participated in Atlanta Games in 1996, Sydney Olympics in 2000 and the last Summer Games in Athens in 2004.
Al-Mutari said time is too precious to waste.
“We simply have to focus and win instead of just participating,” Al-Mutairi told Arab News in an interview from Riyadh.
He said that the road to Beijing Olympics 2008 was not easy and there were many ups and downs along the way, but he is thankful he managed to overcome them all.
Al-Mutairi added that unlike the previous years when players used to qualify one or two years before the event, this year he qualified late, months before the event, which made him shoot under lots of pressure. Al-Mutairi managed to score 121 points in qualifying for the Athens Olympics, and his best scores after that were 114-125 and 118 in the 2007 World Cup held in Germany and 117 in the 2008 World Cup also held in Germany in mid June.
Al-Mutairi is confident that he will achieve positive results in Beijing but expects this year’s competition to be extremely challenging, especially with the presence of the American Vincent Hancock.
“He has been maintaining a leading performance during the past four years and he for certain is a tough competitor,” said Al-Mutairi.
Shooters have no coach and Al-Mutairi said, “I m in charge of the training plan and preparations.
“This motivates me more and I hope things go well and then the victory would come from a personal effort and would definitely mean a lot.”
From his local training camp in Riyadh, Al-Mutairi was set to travel to China for further training weeks before the Olympic competition and to acclimatize as well in the Beijing weather.
He said that the Saudi Olympic Committee is supporting him and would cover the expenses of his training camp in China.
“I really advice all my qualifying colleagues to work hard until the last moment and not to feel victory is guaranteed,” Al-Mutairi concluded.