Salt Lake City Women’s Sabre Update
Qualification for the women’s foil events at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games continued at the weekend in Salt Lake City, USA.
Going into the weekend the Russia, France and Italy occupied three of the four automatic qualification places along with the South Korea. Ukraine held a slender lead over Hungary for the additional European team place.
France were in stunning form in Utah, storming their way to the gold medal. Russia seemed out of sorts though. They lost in the quarterfinals to Ukraine and only finished eighth having lost to Korea and China in the play-offs. That said, their lead was so great before the event, they continue to hold the top qualification spot ahead of France. Italy went out in the quarterfinals to the USA but managed to finish fifth which kept them in the top four and thus provisionally qualified. Both Ukraine and Hungary made the semi-finals and faced each other at that stage. Hungary beat Ukraine putting them into the additional European place. Ukraine are relegated out of qualification but remain just nine points behind.
Romania’s Bianca Pascu and Theodora Gkountoura led the race for the two additional individual European places and top 32 finishes for them would have kept them in the lead. However, with Ukraine dropping out of team qualification, Olga Kharlan now leads the race with Pascu more than 100 points behind in second.
They next meet in Montreal at the Grand Prix in January, where there will not be a team event.