Australian men’s foilists show promise in Japan
The Australian men’s foil team has edged closer to the FIE top 16 after a solid performance at the Takamado Trophy in Tokyo, Japan, this weekend.
Seeded 17th at the outset, the Australian team of Matthew Dallasen, Yves Fontaine, Edward (Ned) Fitzgerald and Sholto Douglas comfortably defeated 16th seed Brazil 45-34 in the round of 32.
The Australians couldn’t match the might of world number one USA in their next match however, sustaining a 45-16 defeat.
Fencing for final placings, the Australian men lost narrowly to Germany 45-39 and Poland 45-34 but held their nerve to defeat Denmark 45-43, securing 15th place overall at the tournament.
National Foil Coach Maestro Antonio Signorello was very pleased with the team’s efforts.
“We are rebuilding the team with two very new, young members,” Signorello said, referring to Yves Fontaine and Matthew Dallasen.
“We had never won against Brazil before, so that’s a good achievement for us.
“I also liked most of the performances in the individual event, despite some of the results,” he said.
The 212-strong field competing in the individual Olympic test event in Tokyo proved challenging for Australia’s young fencers, with only three of our eleven entrants qualifying through pools.
Fontaine posted the best result.
With a preliminary ranking of 110 following a 2V4D performance in pools, he fenced confidently in the T128 to secure an upset win against 19th-ranked Sanita (GER) 15-9 before losing to Giacon (NED) 15-9, finishing the event in 95th place.
Sholto Douglas (3V3D) and Ned Fitzgerald (2V4D) also qualified.
Douglas lost in the preliminary T128 to Pauty (FRA) 15-13, who went on to win silver at the event, and Fitzgerald bowed out in the preliminary T256 courtesy of Sugawara (JPN) 15-11.
Maestro Signorello remains upbeat about Australia’s long term prospects.
“Overall it was a good tour for our foilists,” he said.
“We are good at present and possibly have a brighter future.”