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All six Team Ireland’s foilists made it to the DEs in this year’s Junior World Championships in a bumper day that yielded two L32s and two L64s.

Junior Men’s Foil

A newcomer to the Irish squad, Eoin Gronningsater (Duke University) came out fighting in Pool 1. Victories over Zoons NED, Slavchev BUL, Bird GBR and Czartoryjski POL resulted in a bye through the first round of DEs. Despite entering his L128 match as the lower seed, Gronningsater overturned Goren ISR with an unequivocal 15-2 win. Gronningsater proceeded to the L64 to face the 4th seed, Breteau ESP, but once again refused to play the underdog and progressed 15-8.

The L32 brought another Spaniard in world #70 Alfonso Delbergue. Having kept the score level to 11-11, a lapse in composure during the second period saw Delbergue pull ahead to match point with three unanswered touches. However, Gronningsater was able to find another gear and even the odds at 14-14 – until a quick-fire riposte to the left shoulder brought Gronningsater’s run to an end.

Fencing at Junior Worlds in addition to tomorrow’s Cadet championship, Matthew McKay (RBAI / Fence Like an Olympian

defeated Argote VEN and Jahagirdar IND to earn a spot in the draw. He went out 15-6 to Spoljar CRO in the L256.

  • Eoin Gronningsater – 29th of 188
  • Matthew McKay – 135th of 188

Junior Women’s Foil

Four victories in the pool (Afi TUN, Koleva BUL, Werner GER and world #12 Ricci ITA) saw Anna Lee (TA Paris / Pembroke FC) easily into the pool. She defeated Guemmar ALG 15-1 to reach the L64, but a tough draw against an on-form Tieu USA saw Lee knocked out 15-7.

Cadet fencer Genevieve Clarke (California Fencing academy) warmed up for the U17 event with three pool victories in the U20s, defeating Matraszek CZE, May NZL and Herman AUS. She overturned the higher-seeded junior Chen TPE 15-6, reaching the L64, and went out of the competition at the hands of world #10 Yusova RUS.
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Also on three pool victories, Finnula Mageras (Notre Dame University)
took out Carmona MEX, Tsukhishvili GEO, and Ceres MDA in her pool, then eliminated the higher-seeded Hany EGY 15-3 in the first round of DEs. Next, Mageras faced the 11th seed – and junior world #26 – Hajas HUN, however Mageras came out fighting and went through to the L32 with a 12-11 victory. Her run came to an end 15-9 against Jane Caulfield of Canada

Belfast-based Keziah Beattie (Grosvenor FC) earned victories over Jorgensen DEN and Caleri ARG and a place in the DEs. However, in her first match, Beattie was knocked out by Serena Rossini, junior #1 and reigning world champion, who later proved unable to defend her title after seeding 25th for the tableau.
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  • Finnula Mageras – 32nd of 141
  • Anna Lee – 54th of 141
  • Genevieve Clarke – 62nd of 141
  • Keziah Beattie – 104th of 141

Good luck to our cadet foilists, Matthew McKay, Jake McGillion-Moore, Genevieve Clarke and Emilia Velma, competing in tomorrow’s Worlds!

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