Preview: World’s best foilists set for Euros challenge
The 2022 International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Federation (IWAS) Wheelchair Fencing European Championships in Warsaw, Poland, are set to showcase the region’s best wheelchair fencers.
Check out some of the key names in foil and watch live at the IWAS Wheelchair Fencing website from 29 November – 4 December. Live results will also be available.
Italy, Ukraine, Hungary, Georgia? Take your pick
Hungary’s defending champion Eva Andreja Hajmasi currently sits second to Italian Andreea Mogos in the world rankings of the women’s foil category A.
At the last European Championships in 2018, Hajmasi overcame Mogos in the final. This season the pair have met twice – at World Cups in Italy and Thailand. On both occasions Hajmasi emerged the victor. But Mogos has still landed on the podium, making her a top contender once again.
Also in the mix is Ukraine’s Tokyo 2020 Paralympic silver and World Championships bronze medallist Nataliia Morkvych and Hungarian veteran Zsuzsanna Krajnyak. Krajnyak is a former European foil champion and triple Paralympic medallist in the weapon.
In the women’s category B Georgia’s Irma Khetsuriani is the women to watch. The current world rankings leader won her last World Cup outing in September and has claimed two more silver medals in 2022.
Stacked men’s field
All three of the world’s top ranked wheelchair fencers from the men’s category A are in Warsaw hoping to get their hands on the European gold.
Leading the field is Hungary’s Richard Osvath, the 2018 bronze and Tokyo 2020 silver medallist. Osvath has two World Cup gold and a bronze under his belt from this year.
The Hungarian has however been beaten by Great Britain’s Paralympic epee champion Piers Gilliver, who has turned his attentions to the foil.
The respective world No. 1 and No. 2 are the Italian duo of Matteo Betti and Emanuele Lambertini.
Betti finished alongside Osvath on the European podium four years ago, has two World Cup silvers from 2022 and finished second at the 2017 World Championships.
Lambertini meanwhile is hoping for his first major international senior podium having medalled at both the under 23 and under 17 World Championships in the past.
The Italians are also a year away from hosting the next Worlds in Terni in 2023.
In the category B Great Britain’s Dimitri Coutya is the favourite as the top seed.
Coutya is the current Paralympic and European bronze medallist.
Ukraine’s Anton Datsko is also enjoying a successful season with a World Cup bronze from Warsaw, Poland, in July and Eger, Hungary, just a few weeks ago.
The 2022 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing European Championships take place from 29 November and conclude a season which has included five World Cups and an Americas Championships.