Three Brits finish in the top 32 with Willis placed 20th in Tallinn World Cup
It was a weekend of international men’s events this weekend as 24 British fencers took part in competitions across Europe.
Men’s Epee World Cup – Tallinn
The weekend’s action started in Tallinn with a massive entry of 237 fencers including eight from Great Britain. Six survived the first round, Bennett (V3D3), Harris (V3D3), Lane (V4D2), Marsh (V4D2), Perry (V2D3) and Willis (V5D0). Allen (V1D4) and Thomas (V0D6) both went out. Willis’s efforts were rewarded with a bye straight through to the second day avoiding the three-fight preliminary knockout stage.
Harris and Perry both went out in the first preliminary knockout to 15-12 to Casagrande (AUS) and 11-10 to Beskin (ISR) respectively. Bennett, Lane and Marsh progressed with byes. At the second knockout stage Bennett lost 15-13 to Abajo (SPN), Marsh lost to Bogoyavlenskiy (RUS) but Lane beat Canas (VEN) 15-8 to make it to the final preliminary knockout fight where he faced Nishida (JPN). Unfortunately he lost in a close fight 14-12 leaving just Willis left in for Great Britain.
On day two Willis started beating Tikhomirov (RUS) 15-12 in the round of 64 and then faced world number 9, Imre (HUN). The Hungarian beat him 15-9 leaving Willis placed 20th in the event.
Novosjolov (EST) won his home event beating Grumier (FRA) 15-11 in the final. The bronze medals were won by Alimzhanov (KAZ) and Pizzo (ITA).
Great Britain did not enter the team event on Sunday which was won by Hungary who beat China 28-23. The bronze was won by the USA who comfortably beat Russian 45-36
GB individual placings: Willis 20th, Lane 83rd, Marsh 120th, Bennett 145th, Harris 161st, Perry 162nd, Allen 200th, Thomas 220th.
Men’s Foil Grand Prix – Venice
Eight British fencers headed to Italy to join a field of 156 at the Grand Prix in Venice. Mepstead (V2D4) and Jeffries (V1D5) did not survive the poules stages. Cook (V2D4) was knocked out by Lefort (FRA) in the first preliminary elimination matches 15-5. Kruse (V5D1) received a bye to the round of 64 whilst Davis (V5D1), Kenber (V3D3), Kruse (V5D1), Rosowsky (V5D1) and Tofalides (V2D4) had byes through the first preliminary knockout fight. All four made it through the second preliminary to join Kruse in the round of 64 with Davis comfortably beating Getz (USA) 15-4, Kenber squeezing through 15-14 against Pla Vallbe (SPN), Rosowsky winning 15-10 against Mazza (HUN) and Tofalides taking Chau (HKG) 15-11.
In the round of 64 Kenber lost 15-12 to Le Pechoux (FRA), Kruse fell 15-11 to Choupenitch (CZE) and Tofalides was beaten 15-13 by Cheremisinov (RUS). However Davis impressively beat world number 7, Choi (CHN) 15-14 and Rosowsky beat Wessels (GER) 14-13. In the round of 32 both remaining fencers were beaten – Choi (KOR) beat Davis 15-10 and Lei (CHN) beat 15-4.
The event was won by Le Pechoux (FRA) who beat Akhmatkhuzin (RUS) 15-11 with Ma (CHN) and Baldini completing the podium spots.
GB individual placings: Davis 30th, Rosowsky 32nd, Kruse 38th, Kenber 56th, Tofalides 59th, Cook 113th, Mepstead 123rd and Jefferies 126th.
Men’s Sabre Grand Prix – Budapest
Another eight British men were selected to take part in the Grand Prix sabre event in Budapest joining a field of 132. All but Hutchison (V0D5) made the cut – Alex Crutchett (V2D3), Anthony Crutchett (V3D2), Gann (V2D4), Honeybone (V2D4), Motterhead (V3D3), O’Connell (V2D4) and Ratneswaren V3D3.
Byes were awarded to the Crutchett brothers, Mottershead and Ratneswaren for the first preliminary knockout as Honeybone beat Wang (CHN) 15-13 but O’Connell lost out to teammate Gann, 15-13. Those left in did not make it any further with Alex Crutchett going out to B. Koniusz (POL) 15-12, Anthony Cruthchett 15-9 to Jansen (VEN), Gann 15-11 to Pundyk, Honeybone 15-6 to Igoe (USA), Mottershead 15-3 to Lontay (HUN) and Ratneswaren 15-7 to M. Koniusz (POL).
The event was won by Limbach (GER) who beat Szilagy (HUN). The bronze medals were won by Yakimenko (RUS) and Won (KOR).
GB individual placings: Anthony Crutchett 76th, Ratneswaren 85th, Mottershead 89th, Alex Crutchett 91st, Honeybone 94th, Gann 94th, O’Connell 97th and Hutchison 122.
Next up on the circuit is the Women’s Epee World Cup in Barcelona, Women’s Foil World Cup in Turin and Women’s Sabre World Cup in Antalya.