Sporting Life

Athletes don't wear capes, they're human and hurt

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Pull a hair from your head, hold it to the light and study how fine it is. Then consider this. In sport, the margin between distress and validation, between anxiety and satisfaction, can be as thin as that.

In a shooting range, a year's work can be decided by 0.1 or 0.2 of a point. Adele Tan knows this. In three trials - for the SEA Games in 2017 and Commonwealth and Asian Games in 2018 - she missed selection by roughly that whisker.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 05, 2021, with the headline Athletes don't wear capes, they're human and hurt . Subscribe