Why do fencing comps give out two bronze medals?

Discussion in 'Fencing Discussion' started by anton_fairfax, Apr 13, 2018.

  1. anton_fairfax

    anton_fairfax Rookie

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    is there any specific rationale why most fencing comps don’t have the defeated semi-finalists fence for the bronze?

    They do in the olympics of course, so I wonder why a true third place victor isn’t determined the same way in other comps.

    I don’t really follow any other sports so I’m not sure how it compares to others, but I’ve always thought it odd having gold, silver and two bronzes...
     
  2. Strytllr

    Strytllr DE Bracket

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    My opinion has always been that there's no significant reason to force the issue in non qualifying tournaments and that it gives two people something to feel good about instead of just one.
     
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  3. jkormann

    jkormann Podium

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    More opportunity for the remaining fencers to watch the final / gold-medal match. If they had the 3rd-place decision being fenced at the same time, people wouldn't pay as much attention. If they fenced 3rd-place before the Gold, the tournament would go longer. Plus it forces one extra person to stay around until after the finals.

    --gripe--
    It's bad enough people leave immediately after their DE loss. Stay for at least one more round to see others fence.
    --end gripe--
     
  4. RebelFencer

    RebelFencer Podium

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    The way ratings are awarded in tournaments makes it an unnecessary thing. For qualifiers where the participation is low enough, they will fence off for third.
     
  5. Ancientepee

    Ancientepee Podium

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    Most other combat sports (boxing, judo, taekwando, wrestling) have traditionally used direct elimination format to determine the champion and did not have the losers fight additional bouts to determine lower placements. Fencing did not start using a completely direct elimination format for the Olympics until the 1996 Games. Until then, various formats were used and some of them included direct elimination rounds but usually only for the final rounds after one or more rounds of pools. Even as late as the 1980 Olympics the format used that year was two rounds of pools followed by a direct elimination with repechage to get down to six fencers and then a final pool of 6.

    When the final round uses a pool format, there's usually some sort of a difference between the third and fourth best results and so, traditionally, only one person was awarded third place. As I recall, when the FIE decided to use direct elimination for the final round in 1984, the IOC said that fencing has awarded only one bronze medal in the past and so they would have use a format to determine a unique third place finisher. As a result, that's why fencing is the only Olympic combat sport with a bout to determine third place.
     
  6. prototoast

    prototoast Podium

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    Similarly, most comps don't fence off for places 5-8, 9-16, etc. It's only because so many sports have institutionalized "top 3" as the meaningful set of places that people even think to fence for third, but 3 is just as arbitrary as 4.
     
  7. Purple Fencer

    Purple Fencer Podium

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    It also awards 2 classifications for 3rd instead of 4th place losing out.
     
  8. mfp

    mfp Podium

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    That's not a "reason". There are no differences between placing 3rd or 4th in the awarding of USFA classifications, no matter what competition format is used.
     
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  9. Strytllr

    Strytllr DE Bracket

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    Surprisingly, that doesn't seem to matter much. typically 3rd and 4th place are always awarded the same classification regardless of the event rating. If 3rd place would have received a classification, so would 4th in every situation.
     
  10. Strytllr

    Strytllr DE Bracket

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    That is both some awesome history lesson and at the same time a total facepalm moment. How utterly confusing those rounds must have been back then... And let's not have the IOC get crazy and change anything. because that would be B-A-D.
     
  11. Purple Fencer

    Purple Fencer Podium

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    Now yes....but IIRC, back when I was SoCal Div Secretary (so prior to 2001 when I started selling gear), ratings only went to 3rd place ( in an event like a D1).

    At the time, SoCal did not die ties for 3rd, even for a non-qualifier. I was the one who proposed tying for 3rd so more people could get ratings.

    The chart's changed a little since then, so you're right on the ratings.
     
  12. Nakita

    Nakita Made the Cut

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    So how can you tell who came in third or fourth?
    Would you add up the bout points or the points scored in the DE?
     
  13. Ancientepee

    Ancientepee Podium

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    No. They would be considered tied for third and would both get bronze medals just like in the other Olympic combat sports and (since 1992) in fencing's World Championships.
     
  14. nasnem

    nasnem Made the Cut

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    Fencing Time does give you the option to fence off for EVERY place if you are so inclined. I reffed a tournament this past weekend that chose to use this format. It took a little longer, but I felt like the fencers got a better value with the lesser fencers getting much more fencing experience.
     
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  15. anton_fairfax

    anton_fairfax Rookie

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    Wow that’s really interesting.

    I guess with olympics - and other sports - the “top 3” medals and podium is the traditional number, yet a DE format doesnt neatly provide 3 top results, so it’s just evolved over time.

    And since in other 1 on 1 combat sports the losers don’t normally fight each other to determine their place, I guess that does seem odd now that I think about it..
     
  16. Ancientepee

    Ancientepee Podium

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    National Olympic Committees (NOCs) like the USOC tend to determine the level of funding that the sports in their country receive based on the number of Olympic medals that that sport won in the past Olympics or is expected to win in the next one. They don't care about fourth place finishes which don't show up on the medal rankings list. In 1997, the USFA narrowly escaped getting a drastic cut in the annual funding it receives from the USOC after the 1996 Olympics when fencing didn't win a medal in those Games or come close to winning one even though we had the "home court advantage" because those Olympics had been held in Atlanta.

    So one of the reasons why the FIE changed to an all DE format for the individual events in the Olympics was because the National Governing Bodies (NGBs) of fencing like the USFA wanted to increase the number of medals in each event from three to four thereby increasing the chances of their winning one or more. It was a severe setback to this scheme when the IOC said that they would still award only one bronze medal in fencing. I don't know if the FIE is still trying to get the IOC to give us two bronze medals but, as can be seen with how long it took us to get six team events, it's not easy or quick to get the IOC to make changes. This is probably especially true since changing the format would result in a loss of revenue to the IOC.
     
  17. Mike8145

    Mike8145 Rookie

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    I noticed that places are awarded (other than last 4) by the fencer's seeding. Fine. However when I was watching the Cadet & Junior World's they had a slight variance which made sense to me. If a fencer beat a higher seed, he/she took over that seeding. Hence a #102 fencer, beating say a #2 seed, would finish at #17 vs #32 if they lost in that subsequent round. (The fencer that was defeated may finish only one place back: say #33) Seemed to reward a great head to head performance vs dooming them to their previous pool result. Thoughts?
     
  18. Ancientepee

    Ancientepee Podium

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    I think that you've misinterpreted the numbers that are shown on the DE table. They don't reflect a change in the seeding used to determine final placement. The seeding from the pools was still used to determine final placement. For example, take the JME. Jonathan Piskovatskov was seeded 60th coming out of the pools. In the table of 64, he upset Linus Islas Flygare who had been seeded 5th coming out of the pools. In the table of 32, Jonathan is shown with a 5 next to his name. He won that bout but then lost in the table of 16, finishing in the 9-16 bracket. If he really had acquired the 5th seed, he should show up in the final results as in 9th place. That's not the case. He's in 15th place because it's the seeding out of the pools that was used to determine final placements.
     
  19. Mike8145

    Mike8145 Rookie

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    I guess I assumed too much. Still like it that if you "conquer" you get the "crown."
     
  20. jdude97

    jdude97 Podium

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    I actually dislike how it's represented. Makes it harder to track someone through the tournament (i.e. scan the later round and easily see them) or to see where upsets happen/which low seeds make a deep run. It must be an FIE requirement to represent the results in that format since FencingTime normally shows the seeds in the standard way.
     

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