Fast fencers

Discussion in 'Fencing Discussion' started by Mia Malverick, Feb 19, 2019.

  1. Mia Malverick

    Mia Malverick Rookie

    Feb 19, 2019
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    So, I went to a competition yesterday and lost to this girl in the quarter-finals and in a poule before that (I apologise for bad spelling in advance).

    She isn't even that good in fencing and she doesn't have a strategy but she is INCREDIBLY fast. She gave me 3 touches to the foot and I didn't even see it happen. I just felt her weapon (the category is epee) touching my foot and 2 second later I realised what had happened.

    This didn't happen to only me, but all of her opponents were just as suprised. I am not a begginer and I am not slow or bad (I'm vice-champion of my country) but I've never experienced such situation where I didn't know what to do. The moment that the referee said "alle" she was already attacking, leaving me no time to attack first. I lost 5-1 in poule in like 10 seconds which almost never happens to me.

    What should I do against such fast fencers? Any experience or strategy?

    Any advice is welcome

    Thank you in advance!
  2. tbryan

    tbryan Podium

    May 6, 2005
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    That's a very dangerous way to think about this fencer! o_O She beat you twice in the same event and made it at least to the semi-finals. And you're telling us that you're neither slow, nor bad, nor a beginner.

    It's better to think about her as a fast and smart fencer whose strategy includes using speed to pressure her opponents into making mistakes.

    In epee, if your opponent is fast and bad, then it's normally easy to get her to move into the space too fast, where she'll be vulnerable to various types of counterattack. If your opponent is fast because she's just guessing or making a series of closed-eyes actions, then you should be able to set traps for her favorite combinations. By "closed-eyes actions," I mean that she's not really watching or reacting to what you do once she starts.

    More evidence that this fencer might actually be good. :eek:
  3. SevenDad

    SevenDad DE Bracket

    Mar 25, 2013
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    If you know she was in the habit of coming off the line fast and going for your foot, why didn't you do something to prevent it from happening (after the first time it happened)?

    For example, take one retreat immediately or at least be ready to pick up your front foot/parry her foot touch? Or you could go for a simultaneous attack to the body (since you know her blade is headed down toward your foot) which case you could perhaps get a double instead of her getting a single. Or if you're feeling really frisky, fleche off the line.

    I think tbryan is on to something...she apparently does have a strategy, and that's to score the first touch on her opponents using a fast move to the foot as soon as the ref says "Fence!" might want to ask your coach instead of a semi-anonymous internet forum.
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2019
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  4. Diosluv

    Diosluv Made the Cut

    Dec 23, 2014
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    I never heard off having too much information. Maybe she did, or is going to ask her coach. Assuming she has one. You gave great advice btw. It was probably very helpful to her.
    Mia Malverick and wwittman like this.
  5. robert

    robert Made the Cut

    Feb 8, 2002
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    It might not be her speed but her sense or understanding of distance you need to overcome. Does you opponent have the balance to renew an attack or is it a ‘ONE AND DONE’ type of attack?
    You can 1. Counter attack to her extending arm, 2. ensure your body weight distribution is not shifted to the front foot so you can withdraw it. 3.small retreat off line to set up low line parry riposte. Don’t be stationary as foot attacks only work if your front foot is where your opponent plans it to be so vary your distance.
    Mia Malverick and Diosluv like this.
  6. jjefferies

    jjefferies Podium

    Dec 16, 2005
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    Hello Mia, you don't provide a lot of information about the age group you are competing in or their level of experience. "I'm vice-champion of my country" does not provide enough information. But for this person to get close enough to you to do a toe/foot touch suggests you've failed to manage the distance. When a person goes for a toe/foot touch they have to expose themselves to a simple downward riposte. Suggest speaking with your coach about practicing the very simple shot to the wrist or the head of a person who's trying for a foot touch. If that's a part of your bag of tricks I suspect this person will quickly change their attack.
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  7. Joe biebel

    Joe biebel Podium

    Jan 29, 2003
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    You could just start when the ref say "ready".o_O
    wwittman likes this.
  8. Purple Fencer

    Purple Fencer Podium

    Jan 19, 2001
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    She said it was epee, not sabre ('course, WE would start before we even hook up...)

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