Invictus Games medal for Navy archer

Published on CPL Mark Doran (author and photographer)

Location(s): London, England

Able Seaman Sam Maraldo, centre, fires an arrow as Sapper Matt Taxis, left, and Private Clancy Roberts wait their turn during the novice team event at the Invictus Games in London on September 12. (photo: Unknown)
Able Seaman Sam Maraldo, centre, fires an arrow as Sapper Matt Taxis, left, and Private Clancy Roberts wait their turn during the novice team event at the Invictus Games in London on September 12.

The novice team-recurve archery event at the Invictus Games in London was a real test of accuracy, precision and nerve. Able Seaman Electronics Technician Sam Maraldo didn't disappoint - winning a silver medal in the event on September 12.

The sailor, who was injured in a training accident, works at Defence Plaza in Sydney.

He joined Private Clancy Roberts and Sapper Matt Taxis in the event, which had them pitting their skills of marksmanship against the team from Denmark that won gold and the Brits who finished the competition with a bronze medal.

Firing at targets positioned 18m away, under the watchful eyes of around 500 spectators, as well as a live broadcast by the BBC, put the teams of wounded warriors under extra pressure as they joined competitors from eight nations.

Able Seaman Sam Maraldo

Able Seaman Sam Maraldo



Able Seaman Maraldo also competed in the heats for novice archery, which started with 65 archers and ended up with 16 for the finals events. He finished 14th.

Able Seaman Maraldo said the competition featured a good mix of novices who all had less than 12 months of archery experience.

"I have only been doing archery for about six weeks, with a total of maybe five hours' worth of shooting, so I am pretty happy to have made it as far as I did," he said.

"The best thing about the Invictus Games was that all the athletes supported each other - it didn't matter if we knew each other or what country they were from.

"Some of the athletes were amazing, especially the arm amputees who were shooting arrows with their mouths.

"There were also some who found the competition tough because of the long, hard days and their injuries, but they did their best."

The Invictus Games, an initiative of Prince Harry, concluded on 14 September. It involved more than 400 wounded, injured and ill servicemen and women from 14 nations, with the goal of inspiring recovery, supporting rehabilitation and generating a wider understanding and respect of those who have served their country.

Imagery is available on the Australian Defence Image Library at http://images.defence.gov.au/S20142348.

The medals of the Invictus Game were carefully designed and crafted by Garrard, the oldest jewellery house in the world, to represent the philosophy and vision behind the Invictus Games. An embossed pattern, reminiscent of stitching, has been chosen to represent the journey of recovery and rehabilitation of the wounded, injured and sick Service personnel participating in the Games. The quote from the William Ernest Henley poem Invictus which states “I am the master of my fate” is engraved on each medal, with a Braille translation on the back. Black enamel finishes the centre of each medallion

The medals of the Invictus Game were carefully designed and crafted by Garrard, the oldest jewellery house in the world, to represent the philosophy and vision behind the Invictus Games. An embossed pattern, reminiscent of stitching, has been chosen to represent the journey of recovery and rehabilitation of the wounded, injured and sick Service personnel participating in the Games. The quote from the William Ernest Henley poem Invictus which states “I am the master of my fate” is engraved on each medal, with a Braille translation on the back. Black enamel finishes the centre of each medallion