Titles elude Australia on day three of fencing championships
Published 29 November 2015 (AEDT)
FENCING: Two more Australian titles have been decided at the Australian Fencing Championships in Canberra, both by athletes ineligible to represent Australia at the next Olympics.
French-born Alex Burgun won the men’s epee title, while New Zealand’s Ping Yuan won the women’s foil final.
For Burgun, who will become eligible to compete for Australia at around the time next year’s Olympics are held, it was his first national title for six years.
“It’s a long time, it means a lot for me,” he said.
“I’ve trained hard this year. The top 16 in Australia is very competitive, so it’s not easy to win.
“Hopefully in the next few years I can compete for Australia at a few World Cups and maybe a World Championship, that would be a dream for me.”
Ping Yuan won her fourth Australian epee title, beating Queensland's 16-year-old Alicia Kwag in the final.
Kwag, who finished top 64 at this year’s World Championships, is currently leading the race to represent Australia at next year’s Asian Olympic qualifiers.
“I was happy with how I fenced today, but I got really tired at the end,” Kwag said.
“I think 2015 has been a good year, better than 2014. In January I’ll go to Europe to compete in some World Cups and to do some training, and then hopefully go to the qualifiers.
“Do I think much about the Olympics? Yes, I do.”
Kristian Radford was disappointed with his sixth in the men’s epee, but is still in the box seat to go to next year’s Olympic qualifiers.
“Hopefully I can shore it up with some good international results in the next couple of months,” Radford said.
“I was up 13-8 in my quarter final and felt right on top, but just couldn’t finish it off.
“I just perhaps got caught up in the moment, got sucked into the whirlwind. Hopefully it won’t happen again.”
The men’s foil title will be decided on Monday at the AIS in Canberra.
ROSS SOLLY FOR FENCING AUSTRALIA (modified)