Salem Radio Network News Sunday, September 26, 2021

Sports

Olympics-Fencing-ROC eyes consecutive Olympic gold for women’s team sabre

TOKYO (Reuters) – Russian fencers stayed on track for a consecutive Olympic gold medal at the women’s sabre team event on Saturday, handily beating Japan 45-34 in the quarterfinals.

The top-ranked Russian Olympic Committee team counts individual silver medallist Sofya Velikaya and gold medallist Sofia Pozdniakova among its members.

Velikaya has won four Olympic medals in her career – the fourth the silver from the individual event held on Monday.

Although Tokyo is her first Olympic Games, Pozdniakova won gold at the same event, carrying on her family’s legacy of fencing medals from her father Stanislav Pozdnyakov, president of the Russian Olympic Committee and five-time Olympic fencing medallist.

In the semifinals, the ROC team will face South Korea, which won a tense quarterfinals match against Hungary beating them 45-40.

Italy and France, second and third in world rankings respectively, will face each other on the piste for their semifinal match.

France has Manon Brunet, who won the bronze medal in the individual event and is ranked third in the world behind Velikaya.

Tokyo 2020 marks the third time that the women’s team sabre fencing competition is being held at the Olympics. The first gold medal of the event went to Ukraine in 2008, and the second to Russia at Rio 2016.

Ukraine failed to qualify for Tokyo 2020.

(Reporting by Sakura Murakami; Editing by Karishma Singh)

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