HUNGARY LIVE UP TO TOP BILLING TO CLAIM MEN’S TEAM SABRE EURO GOLD
MEN’S TEAM SABRE REPORT
Top seeds Hungary fulfilled all expectations by claiming the Men’s Team Sabre gold on day four of the European Fencing Championships in Antalya, Turkey.
Tamas Desci, Csanad Gemesi, Andras Szatmari and three-time Olympic Champion, Aron Szilagyi were the team to beat but made light work of their progress to the final. They beat Poland 45-32 and France 45-35 to give themselves the opportunity to reclaim the title they lost to Germany in 2019.
However, it was the other side of the table that drew the most attention with host nation, Turkey, producing powerful displays to beat first, Georgia 45-42 and then Italy 45-37 to make the top four. Their semi-final opponents, Ukraine, also created some of the tournament’s most magical moments beating Spain 45-33 and reigning Champions, Germany 45-44. Ukraine went on to edge Turkey in the semi-finals 45-43 to book their place in the gold medal match.
A buoyant home crowd got right behind the Turkish team of Muhammed Anasiz, Tolga Aslan, Kerem Caglayan and Enver Yildirim at the start of the bronze medal play-off. France began with Bolade Apithy, Eliott Bibi and Maxime Pianfetti with Sebastien Patrice in reserve. Turkey led 15-14 after three legs but could only increase that lead by one point (30-28) after the middle three legs. The French coach, Vincent Anstett brought on Patrice for Bibi in the penultimate bout, but Yildirim provided a fairytale ending for Turkey in the anchor leg, taking them to the bronze medal with a 45-39 victory.
Ukraine’s line up of Vasyl Humen, Yuriy Tsap and Andriy Yagodka (reserve: Bogdan Platonov) sprung a surprise to lead Hungary 10-4 after two legs of the final. Szatmari, the 2017 World Champion, steadied the ship for Hungary in the third leg but Ukraine held the lead 15-13 going into the middle third. Gemesi came on to put Hungary ahead after four but Ukraine came back at them, leading 30-29 going into the final third of the match. Gemesi, Szatmari and then Szilagyi dominated in the end to take the European title 45-39.
The event continues with team events for Men’s Foil and Women’s Epee on day five of the Championships. The full schedule is available here.