Ireland’s Natalya Coyle is through to Saturday’s final of the World Cup 1 series in Charlotte,North Carolina following a day of dramatic upsets.
The 20 years old from County Meath gained the 12th- and final – qualifying place in her group and now can look forward to Saturday’s final whilst several of the favourites went out at this stage of this important event with precious Olympic points to be gained.
Natalya later had this Twitter message for her followers : “Qualified for the final! Delighted! Poor fence but a pb swim, had to run my socks off!! But who cares, in the final on Saturday!”
Top 20 ranked athletes Leila Gyenesei (HUN), Annika Schleu (GER) & Freyja Prentice (GBR) failed to qualify finishing outside the top 12. The girls started the day poorly in the fence and they were not able to make up the points in order to get into Saturday’s final. They will now focus all their energies and focus to regaining form in time for World Cup #2 next week in Rio.
The big 5 athletes, Lena Schoneborn (GER), Victoria Tereshuk (UKR), Laura Asadauskaite (LTU), Mhairi Spence (GBR) and Elodie Clouvel (FRA) all produced flawless displays today and will all be in contention to be on top of the podium. Asadauskaite and Clouvel were particularly impressive. Both the girls who are not particularly known for their fencing prowess, but both put on a master class performance to win their respective groups.
Aya Medany (EGY) produced a solid display coming back from injury, as did former World #1 Donata Rimsaite, who is slowly recovering from her illness.
The local American crowd was treated to a special display by Micky Kelly (USA), who finished 3rd after giving birth to her first born only 4 months ago to the thrill of the local crowd. A truly amazing return to the sport so soon after giving birth.
Apart from Natalya’s excellent showing, other strong performances to make the final included Melanie McCann (CAN), Sam Murray (GBR), and Yihua Miao (CHN), the latter came from nowhere in the combined event to squeeze into 11Th position in group C.