Day 3 at the Wheelchair Fencing is Sabre day. Arguably the most dynamic and exciting of the three weapons used in modern fencing, the Sabre is based on the cavalry sword with a lightweight flexible blade, a straight handle, and a curved guard that protects the hand and fingers. The sabre blade can be used to attack with a cutting action or with the point. The target area of the body is everything above the waist, which is a tip of the hat to the cavalry fighting on horseback where it was considered 'bad form' to cut the horse.
Historically Wheelchair Sabre has been limited to men only, however in recent years women have taken up the discipline and it is getting more popular. At Paralympics we only have Sabre competition for men as we are in a catch 22 situation, as most female fencers do not compete in Sabre as it isn't a Paralympic event, but unless we get more women and nations fencing Sabre it won't be added to the programme. So please do what you can to promote women's wheelchair sabre and return some parity to the games!
The unsung heroes of the Games are without doubt the Armoury and Weapon's Control Team. This merry band of men and women are responsible for ensuring that all the equipment used at the games is of an appropriate standard and most importantly that all stringent safety regulations are met. It is testament to the work that these guys do that accidents are very few and far between in a sport that in theory could be very dangerous! Before each match all the weapons and wires are tested for electrical integrity and to ensure they haven't been tampered with to give an unfair advantage. In addition to the testing the weapons control often provide a repair service for any equipment not meeting required levels of control. It is no easy task to check over 30 fencers each with four weapons in 30 minutes! A big thank you to all the armourers – Good job fellas!
Mens Cat A Sabre
Gold Medal - Yijun Chen, China
Silver Medal – Jianquan Tian, China
Bronze Medal – Wing Kin Chan, Hong Kong
Mens Cat B Sabre
Gold Medal – Grzegorz Pluta, Poland
Silver Medal – Marc-Andre Cratere, France
Bronze Medal – Alessio Sarri, Italy