Bent arm with late attack in foil

Discussion in 'Rules and Referee Questions' started by Phrogger, Mar 6, 2019.

  1. tbryan

    tbryan Podium

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    Well, even under that system, Plumenail seems to have figured out how to attack without extending until after the start of the lunge. ;)

    Evidence from the 1996 Olympics Men's Foil gold medal bout:
    [​IMG]

    There are still good reasons to extend before starting the lunge, especially for a beginner. The coordination of the arm and foot on an attack are difficult and requires a lot of repetitions.

    But even fairly early on, maybe not in the first introductory class, but usually in the student's first year, I see coaches teaching students to vary the the coordination of the arm and foot on the attack. This blog post summarizes some practical applications with the current convention: https://www.coachescompendium.org/BENTARM.HTML. Even if the convention for foil right-of-way were much stricter about the extension, varying the timing of the extension would still be important to prevent the defender from being able to time his parry. The clip with Plumenail is a good example.
     
  2. Michael Comte

    Michael Comte DE Bracket

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    Yes, what Plumenail is doing was generally done at this time. I saw him fencing many times, and fenced him, he was not caught short arm. Here is is bluffing with his arm, his opponent panicks, and finally he extends and scores, well done. Had his opponent just caught the right timing to attack on his preparation, he would have had the point. But the window of opportunity was very short here. Nothing to do with this kind of thing were the right fencer finds the opportunity for an attack on preparation (here the window is huge):


    Don't get me wrong, I do short arm false attack too, since I started fencing, but this is a way of bluffing, if the opponent falls into it, good for me, if he is extending his arm, I can do a contre-temps. But if he extends his arm, touches me while I still have my arm bent, he's got the point. Two weeks ago, I was still doing fleche attack with bent arm, it worked a few times with unexperienced fencers who wanted to parry a non-attack, but then I got hit by a more seasoned guy, ok. It didn't cross my mind to claim the point, I had failed.

    In 2003 I was fencing in Singapore, I had a clever coach there who was advising me to shorten my arm a little bit more during my compound attacks, because anyway, the referee wouldn't see it at this speed. It was a wise advice, and by looking closely, I could see that even perfect style Yuki Ota was doing that and beating all of us. But still it was a little bit cheating.
    The thing is that step after step, the little cheating went bigger. Now I see people saying that the right of way is given to somebody moving forward, provided he is aggressive or takes the initiative, or whatever reason. This has gone too far because at the same time, videos are available everywhere, even youtube provides slow motion. So everybody can see those fencers running on the opponent blade and taking it in the belly.
    Personnaly, I have no ambition in competition except in my club so I don't care, but I will never fence like that, I have my pride, it really looks ridiculous.
     
  3. Michael Comte

    Michael Comte DE Bracket

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    Your link is very interresting, there are good explanations of foil evolution. The lesson shown is nice to. I had lessons like that too, where the master makes couter-attack (or attack in preparation) or takes the parry; it is really good to teach fencer that they must keep the choice open to finish their attack, or parry, until the end, this is high level fencing, and this doesn't go against the idea of foil in my view.
    The thing is that in Malicia's examples, we see fencers who finish their attacks no matter what. Sometimes they start extending their arm after the opponent light goes on. I guess if Iris Zimmermann would act like that in this video, her coach wouldn't be happy.

    On part of your page is wrong in my opinion:
    This would seem to violate Rule t.56 above, but as one referee of my aqauintence is so found of saying: "If you're parrying, I must be attacking".

    No, the fact that I am making parry doesn't make you attacking. This sentence sounds good, I could reuse it in a conversation, people will smile and like my sense of humour, but it is still wrong.
     
  4. NeilNZ

    NeilNZ Made the Cut

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    "No, the fact that I am making parry doesn't make you attacking."

    Why would you be parrying if you aren't being attacked?
     
  5. Inquartata

    Inquartata Podium

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    That is called a beat... :p
     
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  6. NeilNZ

    NeilNZ Made the Cut

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    Oh man, don’t get them started on parry vs beat!
     
  7. Michael Comte

    Michael Comte DE Bracket

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    There could be many reasons, I give you one:

    I want to trick you into believing that I am nervous, reacting fast, and that my reflex parries are quarte-counter quarte. So I pretend to be panicking.

    But when you do your real attack, I wait the last moment and do couter sixte-prime
     
  8. NeilNZ

    NeilNZ Made the Cut

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    Right. You are evidently a fencing genius. I don’t know why anyone has tried to sway you from your obvious supreme command of all things fencing.
    I hope you continue to enjoy fencing in whatever way you choose to.
     
  9. Michael Comte

    Michael Comte DE Bracket

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    Why are you so sarcastic?
    I never said I was a genius. You ask a question, I answer it honestly, without pretending anything about my capacities.
     
  10. Michael Comte

    Michael Comte DE Bracket

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    Ok, here is one reflexion of mine:

    15 years ago, I knew well an international referee and was asking him about a case where a referee had given the right of way to a guy caught holding his hand at the level of his head, his foil pointing to the sky.
    He answered me that the responsible of the FIE referee at that time (a German guy, I forgot his name) was telling that this was a "projection of attack", meaning from this position he could land his point on the target, so he was threatening the target, so this was meeting the criteria of an attack.
    I laughed and answered him that in this case, the guard in sixte position was even more threatening, so in fact every position was threatening the target...

    At that time, this was funny, but now you all seem to agree on this strange interpretation of threatening the target.

    Look at how the saber guys are judging those concepts of threatening target and attack, this is interresting, they didn't change:


    PS: those who just want to fight with me, please go take a blade a fence instead, I would be happy to have a serious discussion and a feel a few people are capable of it here.
     
  11. ChrisL

    ChrisL DE Bracket

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    https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/threat

    threat

    noun [ C ] uk /θret/ us /θret/
    suggestion that something unpleasant or violent will happen, especially if a particular action or order is not followed:

    ---

    To convert that into fencing. The suggestion that a hit will arrive if action is not taken. If I point my foil at the sky, or even backwards, then I hit you on the back, then I have hit you right? So were you threatened by me entering a distance where I could hit you with my blade in that position?
    You should be. I can hit you, therefore you are threatened by my capacity to hit you.
     
  12. Allen Evans

    Allen Evans Podium

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    Why would you make another parry? Because you've stated parrying doesn't mean the opponent is attacking by your definition of the rules. So there no reason why you should wait and make a final parry when you could do multiple parrys and then simply attack by straightening your arm first.

    I'm done with this thread, but I had to step in to point out such an obvious contradiction. I'll let my web page on the bent arm attack and my previous posts speak for themselves. But one of the fundamental flaws in most of these discussions is that the side taking the contrary position (that would be your position, Mr Comte) fails to see the inherent assumptions being made that makes their interpretation of the rules "work". I would encourage anyone taking a contrary position to the current interpretation of the rules to think about the unspoken assumptions that stand behind "hand/arm first". How does having the arm fully extended work in an environment when the defender gets as many parries as they want, whenever they want (the answer to that question is not "derobement" for the most part, don't believe me, try it for yourself).

    I think we're seeing foil move towards a much tighter timing. I'm seeing calls at the National level that punish the attacker for failing to control the time and space on their attack, resulting in more attacks in preparation. The timing on these calls, however, are very tight, and are only being made a pretty high level. It will take some time before they drift down to local fencing (if they ever do, training a referee to this level takes time). I won't be surprised if I see the attack in preparation call drift around a little bit more before the FIE changes another rule and we're back to figuring out how to exploit it again.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2019
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  13. Michael Comte

    Michael Comte DE Bracket

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    Look, Rosatelli is threatening Imboden with his point in the air and scoring:


    Note: it's not me doing the comment ;-)
     
  14. keropie

    keropie Podium

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    I don't have a real problem with that being an attack. That's the way I would have called it. The only argument against is if you think Rosatelli has actually stopped when Race starts his action. The referee has asserted (and I agree, though I could be convinced otherwise) that Rosatelli has continued forward.
     
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  15. ccadet

    ccadet Made the Cut

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    I just reply ChrisL (I just don't read other people sorry)
    That's why you must understand foil threatise... And convention...
    With that clue, you can't stand a menace in action that not already trying to touch, and that'll need parry or ripost.
    Many of "menace"'s action today need another action if want to touch... So how can we talk about menace ?

    Explain feint : a feint have no goal to "menace" as you interpretate but it give priority... And you do it for try make parry reaction (seams attack)
    A feint menace even is the goal is to compound attack (so not to touch in first intension).

    And some people argument that go forward is as feint but that's not in the rules (a feint is... and as bent arm preparation are : "not attack")
    So we should don't care about the ghostly menace (Where, just saying : "I'm coming !" could be is a menace so ? If FIE referees want : and they don't actually)

    For the incorrect attack : the logic is = You take risk make incentives to your opponent make double touch.
    If you understand the convention of foil (try avoid double touch), that should not happen (try make the other incentive to touch you and don't defend)... Even using rules book (But they don't (that's a violate of rules), and it's why convention (Logic of foil) is violate too.)

    We can be fatalist and say that's evolution... (Who don't care about Foil history, or this tenet (not sure translate : "principe", "standard" ?), of this own actuals rules (in rules book))
    But i really thing FIE must react. (And FIE is late ^^, already tried with mecanical thing that's fail, must attack rules book or referees. (It's hard for them !) And i really don't understand many reaction (which shows that aren't aware : you really don't know your sport. Only actuality xD))
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2019
  16. Martingale

    Martingale Rookie

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    Having experienced some wildly strange calls over the decades I have fenced in both sabre and foil, I use the mind set of my earlier days of non-electric sabre.
    You stepped onto the strip against 6 opponents; your opponent, the president and four sight judges and fenced accordingly.
    Your opponent is trying to beat you. The others will call what they see, make sure you show them what they want to see.

    There are no magic hits in fencing and for any action, there are always multiple options, choose one that the referee likes and will call your way. This is why you need to watch and listen to the referee phrase the action. Almost always a polite request for further explanation of the phrasing will be given.
    Use this to plan your next action, perhaps by pretending to duplicate the hit just awarded against you as a preparation that next time you will defeat in a manner that the referee will award you the hit.

    In an important competition, it is very irritating to be the subject of what you believe to be pig headed ignorance by a blind referee (we have all been there!), keep your cool, work out the puzzle set for you and find an answer. Most importantly, don't repeat an action if it was called against you.

    I repeat, fence so that the referee sees what he or she is looking for (their interpretation of the rules).

    More than anything else, enjoy your fencing:)
     

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