FENCING: Di Francesca claims seventh career World Cup win

London Olympic Epee gold medalist Elisa Di Francesca (ITA, at left)

Italy’s Elisa Di Francesca has had a great career, with an Olympic Epee gold in London in 2012 and a silver in 2016. But on the World Cup circuit, she hadn’t made much of an impact since before the Rio Games.

That all changed in Algiers (ALG), where she won her first World Cup tournament since February of 2016 … in the same place! It was her seventh World Cup win and 23rd World Cup medal of her career, which reaches back to 2005. At 35, she is bound to move up from her current ranking at no. 53!

She defeated Japan’s Sera Azuma, who at 19, won first-ever World Cup medal, but lost to the veteran Di Francesca, 15-11, in the final.

Japan’s Kazuyasu Minobe won his third career World Cup gold in the men’s tournament in Bern (SUI), defeating another ageless vet, Dutch star Bas Verwijlen (NED) in the final, 9-9 on criteria after a furious final minute of action. Verwijlen is also 35 and won World Championships medals back in 2005 (bronze) and 2011 (silver), but had only won one World Cup medal since 2015.


FIE World Cup
Bern (SUI) ~ 23-24 November 2018
(Full results here)

Men’s Foil: 1. Kazuyazu Minobe (JPN); 2. Bas Verwijlen (NED); 3. Dmitriy Alexanin (KAZ) and Federico Vismara (ITA). Semis: Verwijlen d. Alexanin, 15-10; Minobe d. Vismara, 15-11. Final: Minobe d. Verwijlen, 9-9 (criteria).

Team Foil: 1. Russia; 2. Italy; 3. Korea; 4. Hungary. Semis: Italy d. Korea, 45-31; Russia d. Hungary, 45-29. Third: Korea d. Hungary, 36-28. Final: Russia d. Italy, 31-27.

FIE World Cup
Algiers (ALG) ~ 23-24 November 2018
(Full results here)

Women’s Epee: 1. Elisa Di Francisca (ITA); 2. Sera Azuma (JPN); 3. Martina Batini (ITA) and Inna Deriglazova (RUS). Semis: Azuma d. Deriglazova, 15-12; Di Francisca d. Batini, 15-6. Final: Di Francisca d. Azuma, 15-11.

Team Epee: 1. France; 2. Russia; 3. Italy. Hungary. Semis: France d. Italy, 45-39; Russia d. Hungary, 45-26. Third: Italy d. Hungary, 43-36. Final: France d. Russia, 37-36.