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Senior World Championships Epee Preliminary Round Preview: July 17

07/16/2014, 11:30pm CDT
By Nicole Jomantas

Andras Horanyi (right) is the U.S. Men's Epee Team's highest ranked fencer heading into the preliminary rounds of the Senior World Championships. Photo Credit: Devin Manky.

(Kazan, Russia) – The final day of preliminary rounds at the Senior World Championships will be held on Thursday with the largest events of the tournament – men’s and women’s epee.

A newcomer to epee, men’s epee fencer Andras Horanyi (Colorado Springs, Colo.) fenced on three Senior World Teams before making the switch to his new weapon in 2011 and had success on the World Cup circuit this season with a top-eight and a top-16 finish. With less than three full seasons on the circuit under his belt, Horanyi is in a pool with six opponents he has never fenced before: Mehrab Hasanov (AZE), Murtaza Berkan Anil (TUR), Pavel Pitra (CZE), Rasmus Mellanen (FIN) and Ahmed Nabil (EGY). While Horanyi may be fencing at his first Senior Worlds in epee, he has posted wins this season over two-time Senior World Champion Nikolai Novosjolov (EST) and 2011 Senior World Champion Paolo Pizzo (ITA).

Jason Pryor (Colorado Springs, Colo.), the reigning Pan Am bronze medalist, also drew a slate nearly full of fencers he has never competed against individually, including Alexander Chernykh (KGZ), Joao Cordeiro (POR), Christian Gustavsson (SWE) and Javgenij Stalmakov (LTU). Pryor did meet Chao Dong (CHN) in a pool bout at the final World Cup of the season where Cordero took the win.

First-time Senior World Team member Jimmy Moody (Colorado Springs, Colo.) is in a pool headlined by Elmir Alimzhanov (KAZ), a top-eight finisher at the 2011 Senior Worlds. Moody also will fence Jan Golobic (SLO), Roman Aleksandrov (UZB), Peeter Turnau (EST), Manyane Sefulard (RSA).

Adam Watson (Richford, Vt.) will be fencing at his second Senior Worlds and, although he has never fenced any of his opponents in individual events, his pool includes two past World medalists – Benjamin Steffen (SUI) who took bronze in the team competition at the 2011 Senior Worlds and Paul Rosello (ESP), a 2008 Junior World medalist. Watson’s other opponents will be Aleksey Tishko (UZB), Mohammed Esmaeili (IRI), Keletigui Julian Diabate (MLI) and Inochi Ito (JPN).

In the women’s competition, London Olympic team medalist Courtney Hurley (San Antonio, Texas) is ranked sixth in the world and will be exempt from the pools, but she’ll be at the Kazan Tennis Academy bright and early to help cheer on her older sister, Kelley Hurley (San Antonio, Texas) as she hopes to make a quick run from pools to the direct elimination rounds.

The elder Hurley, who won bronze with her sister in London, won her first individual World Cup medal in St. Maur in March with a bronze. In fact, one of her pool round opponents is Michaela Kock (FIN) whom Hurley defeated twice this season, including once in the St. Maur pools. Among her other competitors, Hurley has posted wins over two in past international events. Earlier this season, she defeated Ka Mong Chu (HKG) in pools at the Doha Grand Prix and Hurley holds a 3-1 career record against Lis Fautsch (LUX). Hurley’s pool also includes two new opponents – Giselle Vicatos (RSA) and Manizha Bobodzhonova (TJK) – as well as Ricarda Multerer (GER) who won their only individual matchup when they fenced at the 2011 Havana Grand Prix.

Fencing at her second Senior World Championships, two-time Junior World team medalist Kat Holmes (Washington, D.C.) has fenced just one of her pool opponents in a previous individual event – Dayana Martinez (VEN) whom Holmes defeated at the Pan Ams in Costa Rica before going on to win silver. Holmes’s other opponents include Magdalene Xin’En Huang (SIN), Gbahi Gwladys Sakoa (CIV), Olena Kryvytska (UKR), Shiori Komata (JPN) and Veronika Soloveva (KGZ).

For two-time Junior World medalist Anna Van Brummen (Houston, Texas), this is not only her first Senior Worlds, but her first season on the senior circuit. Therefore, all six of the fencers in Van Brummen’s pool will be new opponents as she faces 2005 Senior World team medalist Julianna Revesz (HUN), Claudine Williams (JAM), Ana Constantin (ROU), Tamryn Carfoot (RSA), Sophie Haarlem (SWE) and Rania Herlina Rhardja (SIN).

Competition will begin for the women’s pools at 9 a.m. local time (1 a.m. Eastern) on Thursday. The men’s events begin at 3 p.m. local time (7 a.m. Eastern)

The top 16 athletes after the pools will join the exempt athletes as the 17th – 32nd seeds in the table of 64 on Sunday. Athletes will qualify for the remaining 32 positions in the table of 64 through the preliminary tables of 128 and 64 which will be held following the pool rounds.

Results will be updated live at

Tag(s): News  Andras Horanyi  Courtney Hurley  Kelley Hurley  Anna van Brummen  Adam Watson  Kat Holmes