Pozdniakova, France take gold in Athens
Russian world number 4, Sofia Pozdniakova has beaten a strong field at the Women’s Saber World Cup in Athens, Greece, to take gold, while France have won the teams event.
Reigning world champion, Sofia Pozdniakova, the 21-year-old from Russia, has won her first career world cup gold in Athens, Greece. Overcoming a very strong field, she met three-time world champion Olga Kharlan from Ukraine in the final, and proved too good by out touching her rival 15-10.
Kharlan had overcome 17-year-old Hungarian prodigy Liza Pusztai in their semifinal, 15-5, who was following up her win in the junior European championships in Italy last month; the bronze is her second world cup medal, having won silver at this event last year. Pozdniakova defeated Kim Jiyeon from Korea, 15-11 in their semifinal, with Kim having defeated world number two Frenchwoman Cecilia Berder in their table of 8 bout, 15-12.
In the team event, France overcame a strong Russia, 45-32, to take gold, having earlier out-touched USA in the semi 45-34. Russia had defeated Italy in their own, 45-39, before the the Italians held their nerve against USA to claim bronze 45-42.
1. Sofia Pozdniakova (RUS, gold)
2. Olga Kharlan (UKR, silver)
3. Jiyeon Kim (KOR, bronze)
3. Liza Pusztai (HUN, bronze)
5. Cecilia Berder (FRA)
6. Gkountoura Theodora (GRE)
7. Jiarui Qian (CHN)
8. Charlotte Lembach (FRA)