Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Olympic Stories_ Domination of Italian Fencers

Valentia Vezzali (pictured top), 38, who was actually born on Valentine's Day in 1974 and is Italy's flag-bearer, won yet another Olympic medal on Saturday. At the 2012 London Olympics, Vezzali won a bronze medal while her national teammates Elisa Di Francisca (pictured below), who is also a sex symbol in Italy, won gold. The Italian medal sweep in the individual foil competition was completed with Arianna Errigo winning the silver.

Di Francisca defeated Errigo 12-11 in overtime to win the gold; Vezzali beat out the number fencer Nan Hun-Hee of South Korea for the bronze.

At the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Vezzali became the first woman to win three consecutive gold medals, starting with the 2000 Sydney Olympics, in the individual foil competition. She also won a silver at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

Additionally, Vezzali has won 13 golds at World Fencing Championship events with the last one coming at the 2011 championships in Catania, Italy.

An Italian male fencer Diego Occhiuzzi, 31, won bronze in the sabre competiton.

Hungarian Aron Szilagyi won a gold medal in the sabre competition to win the first gold medal for his country at the summer games.

Since American fencer Mariel Zagunis, the flag-bearer for the United States Olympic delegation, is a sabre fencer, she does not compete with Vezzali.

In the women's foil competition, American Lee Kiefer, 18, an up and coming star for the United States, was defeated by Errigo.  

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