Another Dazzling Day for Fencer Dylan French
Montreal, April 8, 2014 – British Columbia’s Dylan French once again impressed with a fifth place finish in the Junior Epee category at the Junior/Cadet Fencing World Championships in Plovdiv, Bulgaria.
“I don’t think this is a surprise; Dylan is mentally very strong, and at the World Championships, it’s all about mental performance,” said Team Manager Igor Gantsevich, who is also French’s Assistant Coach, under Head Coach, father Victor Gantsevich.
Already a bronze medallist from Cadet competitions on Saturday, French began his Junior events in the best possible way Monday: winning six matches in the round robins to finish in first place in the opening leg of his events.
The 16 year-old fencer then went on to win 15-5 against South Africa’s Adam Schroeder, and bettered Germany’s Lukas Bellmann 15-8 in the elimination rounds.
“Yesterday, Dylan fenced like a man on fire – nobody could touch him, and as a result, he was finally the number one seed,” commented Igor Gantsevich.
Tuesday, the Vancouver native continued to impress with a 15-14 win against Spain’s Yulen Pereira, after which the Canadian defeated Hong Kong’s Sze Hou Ho 15-12.
French’s defeat of Pereira in the round of 32 deserves special note, given that the Spaniard was first in Junior International rankings and World Silver Medallist in the category last season.
“Dylan likely had one of the matches of his life, and his victory is important for our sport. From Vancouver to Montreal, kids will now believe that they can fence with excellence internationally,” enthused Gantsevich.
Japan’s Masaru Yamada – who would go to win the gold – put an end to French’s dream day, dashing the Canadian’s hopes with a 15-6 win.
Yamada won 15-2 in the final against South Korea’s Byeungchan Jung; a pair of bronze medals went to Hungary’s Daniel Berta and American Justin Woo.
Elsewhere in Junior Epee competitions, Marc-Antoine Blais-Bélanger (Montreal) also reached the round of 32, but sadly the Quebec native was beaten 15-7 by Yamada; Blais-Bélanger ended his day ranked 26th.
In women’s fencing, epeeist Kathleen Hannah Beach (Toronto) also reached the round of 32, but ended in 32nd place, after a 10-9 defeat by Hungary’s Adrienn Felker.
Gabriella Page (Blainville) will begin the Junior Sabrests’ round of 32 Wednesday, after having won five of six matches in the round robin, beating Vietnam’s Thi Thu Ha Bui 15-4. Page faces French fencer Margaux Rifkiss next.
Frédérique Bourget (Blainville) and Véronique Lamarre (Blainville) were unable to make it past the first day of sabre competitions, and finished 37th and 66th, respectively.
Three Canadian Junior foilists were also eliminated Tuesday: Alastair Keyes (Ottawa) in 55th place, Eamonn Gomez-Perales (Montreal) in 83rd, and lastly François-Olivier David (Sainte Julie) in 89th place.
Written by Sportcom for the Canadian Fencing Federation