Hungary’s Aron Szilagyi and Italy’s Martina Criscio take the first saber Grand Prix of the 2022-2023 season this weekend in France.
ORLÉANS, France, Dec. 8-10:
Aron Szilagyi, defending World Champion and three-time Olympic champion, earned his first gold of the season with a win over Georgia’s Sandro Bazadze, 15-10, in the finals. In the semifinals, Bazadze won decisively against Italy’s Luca Curatoli, 15-6, while Szilagyi beat Korea’s Kim Junghwan, 15-8.
The win marked Szilagyi’s fourth Grand Prix win in his career – with the previous gold earned this past May in Padoue. His next competition will be in the upcoming Grand Prix in Tunisia, January 13.
Despite the defeat in this event, Bazadze still looks good for the season. In addition to the silver won this weekend, he won the World Cup gold in Algeria last month, showing a promising start to the season for the world number-2. He will compete as well in Tunisia next month.
In the women’s event, Martina Criscio defeated France’s Manon Apithy-Brunet by a single touch, 15-14, in the final to earn her win. In the semifinals, Apathy-Brunet won out over world number-3, Greece’s Despina Georgiadou, 15-11, while Criscio beat her fellow Italian, Chiara Mormile by a score of 15-12.
Criscio’s win earns her first gold in a Grand Prix while preventing Apithy-Brunet from her own first Grand Prix gold, both having previously earned bronze in earlier events. They are each signed up to compete in the Tunisia Grand Prix next month.
Team USA ended with several top placements in each event. The best placing went to Magda Skarbonkiewicz (7) in the women’s event with Elizabeth Tartakovsky (16) earning a top-16 finish. In the men’s event, Daryl Homer (10) earned a top-16 finish while Andrew Doddo (29) earned top-32.
Results Men’s Sabre
- Aron Szilagyi (HUN, gold)
- Sandro Bazadze (GEO, silver)
- Luca Curatoli (ITA, bronze)
- Kim Junghwan (KOR, bronze)
- Iulian Teodosiu (ROU)
- Bolade Apithy (FRA)
- Gu Bongil (KOR)
- Matyas Szabo (GER)
Results Women’s Sabre
- Martina Criscio (ITA, gold)
- Manon Apithy-Brunet (FRA, silver)
- Despina Georgiadou (GRE, bronze)
- Chiara Mormile (ITA, bronze)
- Anna Bashta (AZE)
- Misaki Emura (JPN)
- Magda Skarbonkiewicz (USA)
- Cyrielle Girardin (FRA)