Hannah Nesbitt battles to podium in Sweden
Hannah Nesbitt claimed the silver medal at the Women’s Epee Satellite event in Stockholm at the weekend. In a field of sixty-six, she came through the first round poule with four victories from five fights. In her second poule, she won five fights from six, leaving her ranked tenth for the elimination rounds.
Mary Cohen ended the poules stages ranked first but fell to Mavrikiou of Cyprus in the round of 16. After a bye through the 64, Nesbitt beat World ranked 404, Racheal Connor of Ireland 15-10, Sweden’s World 355, Sofia Hannson 15-8 and World 284 from Norway, Irina Aschehoug 15-13 to make the semi-finals.
There she faced another Swedish fencer, World 189, Emelie Mumm in a battle for distance. The Swedish fencer got the better start but Nesbitt levelled at 3-3 before the two traded hits. Finding her distance and timing, the British fencer started to pull away by forcing Mumm on the attack and then picking her up on preparation or with well timed parry ripostes. In the final period Mumm staged a comeback but Nesbitt held on to win 15-12.
The final was against Irina Mavrikiou, who had earlier knocked out Cohen. Nesbitt started well to lead 3-1, but the combative Cypriot was always on the front foot and levelled. Nesbitt cleverly employed her sixte binding action to take the lead before a series of doubles saw the British fencer leading 9-7. A couple of distance errors and an unfortunate miss in close quarters meant that Mavrikiou stole the lead and pushed on to a 15-11 victory.
Speaking after the event, Nesbitt said, “It has been a difficult year as I have been living and working abroad due to my university studies. Trying to find the time and energy has been tough but when you get a result like this, the hard work and sacrifice is worth it. This result has given me so much confidence for the rest of the season and hopefully I can get some good results. Thank you to the British girls for their support and to Mary Cohen for coaching me on the piste.
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