Moreton’s inaugural entry into the British Public Schools' Fencing Championships proved to be a record success. Held in Crystal Palace National Sports Centre in London, this historic competition has boasted numerous international fencers, future Olympians, and even a young Winston Churchill amongst its previous competitors.
The girls competed in the Mount-Haes and Junior Girls Sabre events against powerhouses of school fencing such as Millfield, Truro, Brentwood and Whitgift amongst other prominent Schools.
In the Mount-Haes sabre event Ashanti managed to progress through the first round. In a valiant effort she scored two hits against the eventual winner, an experienced international fencer. The second round was a lot tougher but she acquitted herself well to finish the completion in 20th place.
In the Junior Girls events Cindy, Lulu and Evie progressed very comfortably through both rounds of poules to make it into the direct elimination round. They all fenced very well, winning numerous matches and scoring hits even in defeat.
Evie in particular had a stellar two rounds, only dropping one fight in ten matches, resulting in her being ranked third overall going into the knockouts.
A special mention must be made of Honor who found herself in a very tough first poule, and unfortunately did not make the cut to progress – however, despite this Honor supported her fellow Moreton teammates exceptionally, providing motivation and relaying coaching advice.
At the end of the ranking poules Cindy, Lulu and Evie were all ranked in the top 16 and gained automatic progression through the round of 32 into the round of 16: A fantastic achievement in itself, as 40% of entrants are cut prior to this stage.
The next round proved somewhat bittersweet as Evie and Lulu were drawn against each other, with the winner progressing through the last 8. Prior to this, Cindy was drawn against an experienced fencer, with international experience, who was ranked second overall. In a cagey match Cindy lost out 15-9, but provided a few problems for her vastly more experienced opponent and she will undoubtedly learn much from this defeat and come back stronger.
In the all Moreton affair, Evie progressed through in a match that was conducted with a positive attitude, despite the difficulties of such circumstances, with Lulu being the first to support and congratulate Evie in her future endeavours.
Evie was then drawn in the last 8 against another experienced fencer, and it proved to be a very attritional affair; her opponent was relieved to sneak over the line with a 15-10 result.
Evie was attacking with great speed and control, and her opponent did likewise, often resulting in many simultaneous actions with neither fencer wishing to give up the initiative. Whoever broke the cycle first often conceded, proving to be a physically and mentally taxing match for both fencers.
This concluded Moreton’s involvement in the tournament with final standings in the Junior Girls being, Honor 28th, Cindy 15th, Lulu 14th and Evie 5th.
Moreton Coach, Mike Evans-Jones, commented: “This is an amazing set of results for Moreton’s fledgling fencing team, who have only been fencing since September. The girls not just held their own but excelled against very experienced fencers with years of experience.”