Thai wheelchair fencing legend Jana to lead efforts at home Asian and Oceanian Champs

24/04/2024

Thailand’s Paralympic medallist and top-ranked wheelchair fencer in multiple weapons, Saysunee Jana, is set to lead her country’s efforts as they host the 2024 Wheelchair Fencing Asian and Oceanian Championships in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, from Wednesday (22 April).

The event can be watched live at wheelchair-fencing.org alongside live results. Pictures will be available here.

Jana is the world No.1 in the epee and foil in the women’s category B, and No.3 in the sabre. The Thai athlete has also won a medal at every single Paralympic Games since Athens 2004, and is on her road to the upcoming edition at Paris 2024.

South Korea’s Eun Hyo Cho and Japan’s Anri Sakurai are aiming to challenge Jana for the podium’s top spot in epee.

Cho won silver at the 2023 World Championships, just missing out to Jana. Sakurai is the current Asian Championships bronze medallist.

Jana’s teammate Visit Kingmanaw is the top ranked fencer in the men’s epee category B and a bronze medallist from the most recent Asian Para Games in 2023. He is also a serial medallist at World Cups, having found his form in 2023 with three podium finishes.

Thailand are also the World No.2 in the women’s epee team.

Hong Kong, China’s, Yu Chui Yee continues to feature amongst the best as she heads into her sixth Paralympic Games. Competing in the women’s foil category A, Yee just missed out on a medal for the first time at Tokyo 2020 but has since continued to make an impact at World Cups. Yee is also the defending Asian bronze medallist in both foil and epee.

Hyo Kyeong Kwon of South Korea won a medal in every event at her last junior World Championships earlier on in the week. Kwon will be hoping to convert that performance into her first Asian Champs medal in the women’s category A events to add to her success at the World Cup level.

In the team events Iraq are the team to beat in the men’s epee, especially in the absence of Paralympic silver medallists China. They claimed victory at the 2023 Worlds, stunning the Chinese.

Nakhon Ratchasima 2024 will feature the debut of Australia, competing at a major Championships for the first time as the country builds towards the Brisbane 2032 Paralympic Games. Their entry makes the competition the first ever Asian and Oceanian Championships for wheelchair fencing.

Stephenie Rodriguez, Penelope Elliott Fleming and Sam Blade will fly the flag for their country in men’s and women’s sabre and epee.

In addition, Uzbekistan are also joining the international competition circuit for the first time in Thailand. Doston Davornov, Murodjon Kholjigitov, Boburbek Musinjonov, Mukhriddin Islomov and Albina Nuritdinova wil represent their country.

The 2024 Wheelchair Fencing Asian and Oceanian Championships are the second of three regional competitions to take place in Paralympic year. The European Championships took place in Paris in March whilst the Americas will be staged in Sao Paulo, Brazil, in May.

Action in Nakhon Ratchasima will begin on Wednesday with the men’s foil and women’s epee category A and B.

A full compliment of weapons across individual and team events will follow over the coming days.