THE odds against him are as long as the famous River Thames when Mark Javier faces veteran Brady Ellison of the US in a round of 32 duel on Wednesday afternoon in the 30th London Olympics at the hallowed Lord's Cricket Ground.
But don’t tell that to Javier.
“I will go there and play my game. I don’t mind being a heavy underdog. I will do my best for the country,” said Javier.
In a performance which he would rather forget, Javier finished only 55th out of 64 qualifiers in the ranking round, drawing Ellison who comes into the match carrying impressive credentials.
Only 23, the 5-foot-11 Ellison was a veteran of the Beijing Games. Although he never figured in the medal fight in 2008, he worked hard to raise his game and started reaping the fruits as he won the Pan Am Games in 2010 and 2011.
Ellison wound up 10th in the ranking round with a 676 total on a day legally blind Im Dong Hyun of South Korea dazzled the world by establishing a new world record of 699 and helping his country capture the gold medal in the team event.
“Mark has chance,” said Korean mentor Chung Jaeyun, a stick of cigarette on one hand and a bottle of distilled water on the other. “He must be focused.”
The winners will advance to the round of 16.