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Home News Host Italy wraps up dominating fencing competition

Host Italy wraps up dominating fencing competition

Fencing 5 July 2019

NAPOLI, 9 July – Chants of “Italia, Italia” were heard all the way to downtown Naples on Tuesday evening as host Italy swept the last two finals of the Universiade fencing competition at Centro Universitario Sportivo Salerno, about an hour outside the regional capital of Campania.

Thanks to triumphs in men’s team foil and women’s team sabre in front of a raucous partisan crowd, the talented tricolour squad completed the meet with a Games-leading 13 medals in 12 events, including five FISU titles.


In men’s action, the trio of Guillaume Bianchi, Francesco Ingargiola and Damiano Rosatelli dispatched South Korea’s Choi Min-seo, Seo Jung-min and Seo Myeong Cheol by 45-22 in the gold-medal match.


Russia’s Iskander Akhmetov, Askar Khamzin and Grigoriy Semenyuk were equally dominant in the duel for third place, downing Australia 45-23.


Italy’s supremacy in team foil was somewhat predictable as Rosatelli and Bianchi had claimed individual gold and silver in the discipline last Thursday. On their way to the team final, the locals beat India 45-11 in the round of 16, China 45-28 in the quarter-finals and Russia 45-30 in the semis.


“This is the perfect ending to a great competition for us,” said Rosatelli. “It’s always special to compete at home, and of course it’s extra special at an event of this magnitude. I couldn’t be happier to share this gold with such amazing teammates.”


It was a different story in the women’s team sabre final as Italy and France exchanged touch for touch for the majority of the contest. Michela Battiston, Rebecca Gargano and Lucia Lucarini finally prevailed 45-41 over France’s Sara Balzer, Sarah Noutcha and Margaux Rifkiss.


The thrilling affair featured all three medallists from the individual event, including Balzer (gold), Lucarini (silver) and Battiston (bronze).


The Italians had previously downed Great Britain 45-34 in the quarters and Russia 45-33 in the semis, after earning a bye in the round of 16.


South Korea’s Hong Haeun, Jeon Su-in and Kim Jeongmi went on to defeat Russia 45-29 in the bronze-medal confrontation.


“We knew this was going to be a tough battle. France is very talented, and of course they had the gold-medal winner on their side,” said Lucarini, who avenged a loss to Balzer in the individual final with a 6-4 head-to-head win in the team event. “After witnessing the win from our men’s team, we were extra motivated for our own final.”  


NOTE: While they didn’t compete in their respective team finals, South Korea’s Jang Hyo-min (men’s sabre silver), Russia’s Alan Fardzinov (men’s sabre bronze), France’s Rozene Castanie (women’s foil silver) and South Korea’s Ko Chaeyeong (women’s foil bronze) also merited medals for their country as they participated in earlier rounds.


Men’s Team Foil



Bronze: RUSSIA


Women’s Team Sabre


Silver: FRANCE



Cipressa stars as hosts claim 5th gold of the Universiade with win over Russia

SALERNO, July 8 – Italy fended off a late rally to beat Russia 45-38 and triumph in the women’s foil fencing team event at the Universiade on Monday. Erica Cipressa, who won gold in the individual event, put the hosts on top early on, dominating her first leg against Olga Batenina. Italy built on the good start and went into the last third of the match with a 30-20 advantage. But Batenina gave Martina Sinigalia a torrid time in the seventh period to pull the Russians back to 33-27.

Maria Melnikova kept the momentum going, winning her contest with Camilla Mancini 7-4 to bring the gap down to three points before the final period. But Cipressa showed composure and steered the hosts home against Oksana Hauregi Martines in the final battle to send to the crowd in Salerno raptures. Earlier on Monday, France beat China 41-38 to take the bronze medal in a tight affair that featured several scrappy spells, with Morgane Patru sealing third place with a fine counterattack just before the clock ran out.


In the men’s epee event, South Korea won gold defeating Russia 45-31 in the final, while Italy took bronze. After a close start, the Koreans took command, with Lee Seunghyun and Jang Minhyeok using explosive speed to dominate contests against Alan Fardzinov and Dmitrii Shvelidze and take them from 9-9 to 20-11.


The Russians looked like they might be coming back when Fardzinov won five consecutive points in the seventh leg. But the rally did not last and the Koreans cruised home from then on.


Earlier on Monday, Italy beat Poland 45-33 to take the bronze medal.


July 6

Italian Erica Cipressa proved to be an intimidating presence throughout her victorious run to the women’s individual foil gold at the 30th Summer Universiade on home soil

SALERNO, ITALY, 5 July – Classes might be out on the Centro Universitario Sportivo Salerno campus, but school was in session as Erica Cipressa took home the host nation’s first gold in fencing’s individual women’s foil event.


With a continuous and vigorous attacking style, Cipressa left her opponent little room to breathe as she won 15-3 over Morgane Patru of France.


It was another Italians day as as Italian Camilla Mancini shared the final step of the event’s podium with Malina Calugareanu of Romania.


Wearing the vibrant Forza Italia blue, Cipressa was jubilant after the awarding ceremony. “It was a perfect competition,” the 23-year old Venetian said. “I really wanted this victory and now I get to enjoy it. Here I am, in Italy, in front of a warm and welcoming public. I am proud to have brought to Italy our first gold medal of the Napoli 2019 Summer Universiade.”



4 July

NAPOLI – The second time at the FISU Games was a charm for Alexandra Louis-Marie of France and South Korea’s Oh Sang-uk, who captured gold on the first day of the Napoli 2019 fencing competition, two years after achieving modest individual results at the 29thSummer Universiade in Taipei.

In front of an enthusiastic Thursday evening crowd at Centro Universitario Sportivo Salerno, Louis Marie (above) edged Russia’s Evgeniya Zharkova 15-12 in the women’s epee final, while Oh defeated Frederic Kindler of Germany 15-11 to claim the men’s sabre title.


Two summers ago, at Taipei 2017, Louis-Marie finished 44th after dropping her first qualifying match, while Oh, a pre-tournament favourite, finished a disappointing 24thfollowing a second-round loss.


The Korean star did rebound nicely from that heartbreaking loss, however, and helped his compatriots win Universiade gold in the team event.


“I believe I was lacking experience in Taipei. I was a little young,” said Louis-Marie, a 23-year-old from the Caribbean island of Martinique. “Since then, I’ve had two years to work with my coaches and the hard work paid off. I had a very good season this year. It’s awesome to finish my individual season on a high note with this Universiade gold.


“Winning France’s first gold medal in Naples is amazing. It’s a fantastic feeling.”


Towering at 1.86 metres, Louis-Marie, a former junior world champion (2016), enjoyed a significant height and reach advantage over her Russian rival in the final. Her aggressive style also put Zharkova on the defensive.


“Of course, my reach is an advantage. However, reach alone doesn’t win matches. You have to move well, use your legs and have good rhythm. In the final, I started strong, and from there I tried to maintain my rhythm, and thankfully that was enough to win,” explained the victor, who never led by more than two points before closing the affair with a three-point margin.


Nickol Tal of Israel, who lost 15-8 to Louis-Marie in the semifinal round, and Italy’s own Roberta Marzani, who lost 15-9 to Zharkova, each merited a bronze medal.


In men’s action, Oh and Kindler advanced to the gold-medal duel thanks to semifinal victories over local favourite Matteo Neri (15-10) and Romania’s Razvan Ursashi (15-10), respectively. Ursashi and Neri returned home with bronze.


In the final, Oh jumped out to a quick 8-4 lead at the break, saw Kindler come back to within two points at 13-11, before closing things out with a pair of furious attacks.


“I think my movement and aggressiveness made the difference tonight,” said the 22-year-old, a back-to-back team world champion in 2017 and 2018 who claimed individual gold earlier this year at the International Fencing Federation Sabre Grand Prix in Cairo, Egypt. “My opponent was very strong. I started the match well, but he never gave up.”


Oh and Louis-Marie will both be back in action in a few days in the team events.


The Universiade fencing competition resumes Friday with the women’s foil and men’s epee tournaments.