16 Mar 2018
Public Schools Fencing Championships 2018

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Public Schools Fencing Report

The 2018 Championships saw Dulwich register a record 25 fencers. Despite a couple of injuries there was a real buzz and excitement about the Championships with many new fencers coming to fence for the first time.

Day1
In Foil, Toby Stinson led the way in his last year against opponents who were big, fit and experienced. He showed fantastic determination and spirit to reach the last 64 were unfortunately he bowed. Will KC had a solid Championship but nerves got the better of him and he bowed out to a stronger opponent in the pool.

In Epee, Joshua Chan, Tom Patton and James Cook all had solid runs up to top 32, with some moments of brilliance and some tight wins. A special mention to James who showed great courage and hearth behind his blade to progress. Leo Tidmarsh instead was clearly inspired and made his way to the top 16 where he had a good lead for 8/4 against a strong, but beatable opponent. Leo’s change in tactics hindered his advance and at 13/13 he conceded 2 hits (and the fight). Leo will have learnt a great deal during the day and will no doubt bounce back stronger next year.

Day2
In Foil, the Tan brothers seemed unstoppable, dominating the pools and the first elimination bout in top32, Gerald won his bout 15/0 in a fearsome display of power. Young Garrett then paid the toll of his emotions after conceding too much of advantage to an opponent who made him nervous and a series of mistakes sealed his loss. Gerald, also bowed out of the tournament in the last 16 and he will have been disappointed not to have continued his progress but will have learnt valuable lessons along the way.

In Epee, Felix Schneidemann started slowly in first pool but soon recovered and started to follow the advice given and tactical came to the fore. Emotionally he was charged and clearly hungry for victory showing some excellent moves and collecting important victories. His run ended in top16 where he met probably the only opponent in the room who had a style that was Felix's perfect counter, resulting in Felix struggling o find a way to score points. Bad luck but a valuable and prestigious 11th place for him overall. Will Holmes performed admirably in his first fencing competition and it was a pleasure to see him score points and leanr as the day progressed. I have no doubt he will be back for more next year.

Day3:

Sabre is where most of our fencers entered given that our focus for beginners has been on this weapon for the past two years.


James Lyon, Sunrise Foster and Alejandro Galdez were all outstanding in their first competitions and raised expectations as to what the future might hold for them. Sunrise was clearly nervous but managed to pull put a victory and scored some excellent points as his confidence grew. James and Alejandro proved great maturity and understanding of the fight, winning both 3-4 fights and fencing with intelligently. Freddie Lesley will have been disappointed as he seemed to lack the spirit he showed last year, despite having a good technique and the skills to go further. Xander Tuck and Dexter Lachmann who both managed to surpass their problems with Dexter showing some good tactics and great determination while Xander finally broke free for the grasp of fear that usually enveloped him come competition time. Simon Sun and Aiken Furlong will both have been disappointed with their lack of preparation which clearly inhibited their progress. Both physical and mental fitness are required to achieve medals at these championships and they weren’t quite there with either. Tom Borrett took the bull by the horns and displayed an outstanding attitude in varying his tactics, conserving energy and overcoming larger and more physical opponents by being clever. Tom reached the round of 16 and unfortunately the calls didn’t quite go with him as made numerous attacks that went unrewarded. Tom heads to the National Finals in Sheffield full of confidence following this performance, and his Silver in the London South East Championships.

So overall, a solid championships for all the boys as fencing continues to grow here at Dulwich under the coaching of former Italian International Fencer Marco Paolo Cuomo. We now have more boys fencing regularly and more boys into the top 32 / top 16 than ever before. The challenge for our boys now is to knuckle down and go that one step further by ensuring they are fit, strong and training on a regular basis. The medals will follow. Well done to all involved.