Foconi wins Men’s Foil Olympic Test Event, Volpi and Kharlan take golds in FIE Women’s World Cup
Italian world champion Alessio Foconi won the men’s individual foil gold medal at the 2019 H.I.H. Prince Takamado Trophy Men’s Foil World Cup in Tokyo at the weekend.
Foconi cruised to victory by beating France’s Maxime Pauty in the final, however there was success for the French as they came away with gold after clinching the men’s team foil competition.
The competition was also an official 2020 Olympic Games Test Event for fencing and took place in the Makuhari Messe in Chiba City where fencing will be held next year. It drew 211 mens foilists and 19 teams from around the world to compete in the Japanese capital as part of the “Ready Steady Tokyo” test event series.
Victory for Foconi, the reigning European champion, saw him add another major medal to his collection after he earned bronze at November’s World Cup in Bonn.
On this occasion he went golden by winning the final match of the men’s individual foil event against Pauty, 15-5. Pauty, a member of the French squad which claimed team silver at this year’s World Championships in Budapest, was unable to cope with the speed of his Italian opponent in the gold-medal bout who eased to a comfortable success.
To get to the gold medal decider Foconi beat teammate and Olympic champion Daniele Garozzo, 15-10 in the semi-finals, having already overcame another teammate and world champion, Andrea Cassara, in the quarter-finals, 15-8.
Pauty defeated Russian world champion Alexey Cheremisinov by the same scoreline 15-10 in their semi-final, this after Cheremisinov had earlier beaten French world champion Enzo Lefort, 15-6 and teammate Russian world champion Dmitry Zherebchenko in the round of 16, 15-12.
In men’s team foil, France overcame the challenge of the USA, 45-39 to take the gold medal. The French had earlier overcame Italy, 45-27 in their semi-final duel, whilst the USA beat Russia in their last four encounter 45-34. Italy took the bronze medal over Russia, 45-38.
There was plenty of fencing action elsewhere with International Fencing Federation (FIE) Women’s Foil and Sabre World Cup events also held in Saint-Maur, France and Salt Lake City, USA, respectively.
In the Women’s Foil World Cup in Saint-Maur, second seed Alice Volpi beat fellow Italian Martina Batini to clinch the individual title. Volpi, the 2018 world champion, triumphed 15-10 in the final held at the Centre Sportif Pierre Brossolette having earlier defeated the United States’ Lee Kiefer 15-13 in the semi-finals.
Volpi started the day by overcoming Hong Kong’s Liu Yan Wai 15-5 in the last-64 before going on to beat France’s Alice Recher 15-12 in the last-32, Russia’s Leyla Pirieva 15-9 in the last-16 and France’s Ysaora Thibus 15-12 in the quarter-finals.
Kiefer was joined on the podium by top-seeded Russian Inna Deriglazova, who lost 15-14 to Batini in the other last-four encounter.
Russia won team gold on the final day of action after edging past Italy 42-41. Russia, whose team featured top-seed Inna Deriglazova, enjoyed more comfortable victories in the knockout stages, defeating Japan 40-21 and China 44-31.
On the other side of the draw, the Italian team were boosted by the likes of Volpi and Batini as they beat Hungary 45-28 in the last eight and Poland 45-33 in the semi-finals. The bronze medal went to Japan after a 45-32 win over Hungary.
World champion Olga Kharlan came away from the FIE Women’s Sabre World Cup event in Salt Lake City with the gold medal after another impressive performance.
The Ukraine fencer, seeded second, beat China’s Jiarui Qian 15-9 in the final held at Salt Palace Convention Center.
Bronze medals went to South Korea’s Seo Ji-yeon who was beaten 15-14 in her semi-final against Qian, and France’s Manon Brunet. The French fencer lost 15-9 to Kharlan, who has won four world titles and two Olympic bronze medals.
Olympic silver medallist and top seed Sofya Velikaya of Russia had an early surprise exit from the competition as she unexpectedly beaten at the last 16 stage. The two-time individual world champion lost 15-13 to France’s Sarah Noutcha, however the latter’s progress ended in the quarter-finals as she was beaten 15-14 by Seo.