Individual medals decided at Warsaw World Cup
The third and final day of competition at the 2022 International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports (IWAS) World Cup in Warsaw, Poland, delivered more glory for the hosts as the individual events concluded on Saturday (9 July).
Poland collected four golds over the first three days of competition and a clutch of podium finishes overall.
Three Polish fencers claimed all but one of the medals on offer in the men’s sabre category B.
Tokyo 2020 Paralympic silver medallist Adrian Castro led Michal Dabrowski and Grzegorz Pluta onto the podium. Great Britain’s Shah Rashid achieved his best ever performance at this level with the second bronze.
Michael Nalewajek became the latest talent from the host country to emerge on top in the men’s foil category A. Nalewajek was too much for Italy’s Matteo Betti to handle in the final and stormed to his first individual World Cup gold in the weapon.
The British duo of Piers Gilliver and Dimitri Coutya, the respective men’s category A Paralympic champion and category B bronze medallist, both doubled their epee World Cup gold medal haul for 2022. Coutya later went on to take gold in the foil.
Germany’s Maurice Schmidt, a former IWAS Youth World Games champion, reached the top of his first World Cup podium in the men’s sabre category A.
Schmidt led the Ukrainian duo of Artem Manko and Rio 2016 Paralympic champion Andrii Demchuk into silver and bronze on their return to international competition. Italy’s Edoardo Giordan rounded off the top three.
It was all change in the men’s category C events as Japan’s Michinobu Fujita overturned the dominance of Ukraine’s multiple world champion Serhii Shavkun to win both the epee and foil.
Shavkun did however still take the respective silver and bronze. Italy’s Leonardo Rigo also doubled-up on medals with the same colours. Latvia’s Dmitrijs Valainis secured two bronzes.
Polish World No.1 Kinga Drozdz returned to the top in the women’s sabre category A after claiming silver on her season debut in Chon Buri, Thailand, in May.
Drozdz sailed through the preliminary rounds before overcoming Great Britain’s Gemma Collis in the final.
French 22-year-old Brianna Vide secured her second top three finish of 2022 with bronze, continuing an impressive season. And Hong Kong’s Yu Chui Yee – a five time Paralympic champion in epee and foil – grabbed her first World Cup podium in the sabre with third.
Drozdz’s teammate Marta Fidrych repeated her golden performance from Chon Buri in the women’s epee category A. Collis took silver again ahead of Hungary’s Amarilla Veres and Yee.
Veres’ compatriot Eva Andreja Hajmasi ended a five-year wait for gold in the women’s foil category A. An overjoyed Hajmasi screamed in delight at the end of her match against Yee who concluded the competition with a 100 per cent podium record.
Spain’s Judith Rodriguez Menendez made an impression on the field with bronze, just as she did on her international debut in Sao Paulo, Brazil, where she took epee gold. Georgia’s Nino Tibiliashvili completed the top three.
Thailand’s Saysunee Jana continued to impress in the women’s category B events, triumphing in both the epee and foil. The Tokyo 2020 epee bronze medallist also grabbed silver in the sabre.
The USA’s Ellen Geddes rode the wave of a successful season with her second foil bronze and third career podium overall. And Italy’s Rossana Pasquino was the victor in the sabre, also bagging silver from the epee.
The 2022 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing World Cup concludes with the men’s team foil and women’s team epee as well as the debut of the mixed team sabre.