Lembach secures first Grand Prix gold at FIE Grand Prix in Moscow
France’s Charlotte Lembach secured her first major Grand Prix victory on Sunday with a dominating performance in the women’s sabre competition at the Moscow Grand Prix in Russia.
Lembach, who was a quarter-finalist in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, produced a series of fine performance through the tournament which culminated in beating the world number two, Anna Marton of Hungary by 15 hits to 10 in the Final.
The 29 year old Frenchwoman, currently ranked sixth in the world rankings, has competed at two Grand Prix events and had four World Cup podium finishes, but had not secured a major victory before this success in Moscow.
She fought her way to the Final with an impressive 15-8 victory over Korea’s Jiyeon Kim in the quarter-finals, before accounting for Romania’s Bianca Pascu 15-11 in the semi-finals.
The other quarter-final ties saw Pascu progress at the expense of France’s Manon Brunet 15 touches to 8, Brunet’s compatriot Caroline Queroli edge past Japan’s Chika Aoki 15-13, and Marton easily overcame Russia’s Anna Bashta 15-5.
The semi-final meeting between Marton and 18 year old Queroli was another largely one-sided encounter with Marton winning easily by 15 touches to 5.
However that was where the winning run for the Hungarian abruptly came to an end as Lembach impressively closed out victory to take the title and gold medal.
The weekend’s Grand Prix was the last of the nine world Grand Prix events sponsored by the International Fencing Federation (FIE) in a series which all leads up to the Senior World Fencing Championships Leipzig, Germany, in July.
Before that takes shape, all eyes will be on the European Championships which are being held from 12 to 17 June in Tbilisi, Georgia, and will serve as a final warm-up and indicator for those World Championships just over a month later.