Archived Gossip: 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007


29/12/2010: A former Kiwi fencer now living across the pond asked why I have not posted any earthquake pix. Another, now living in Canada, suggested much the same. Well, just for you two here are some shots from the Boxing Day shake.

The great photographer is moved on by a ChCh Policeman blocking off Manchester Street near Worcester Street when the former church, left, started to crumble after the Boxing Day earthquake. cop


Staff at the Harvey Norman Store on the corner of Moorhouse Avenue and Colombo Street, take a vote after the 10.30am quake. The store, which was full of shoppers for its Boxing Day sale, re-opened the next day. harvytoo


Australian visitors recover near New Regent Street after evacuating their room on the 13 th floor of a Gloucester Street hotel. The couple, from Brisbane, headed for the nearest park for a refreshing nap in the sun.brisbane


Condemned after the September earthquake and after-shocks, these Manchester Street buildings succumbed to the Boxing Day shake-up!cockers

You can see in the background of this photo that 99.99% of Christchurch is still standing, so don't believe all you read, or see, or hear in the media!



27/12/2010: kiwiflag Queen's Christmas Speech, see it here.


Not quite but The Queen, in her Christmas Message, pointed out the many benefits of sport to nations throughout the world, yet the New Zealand habit of closing down a sport for a third of the year is a strange way of developing sport and taking advantage of those benefits. In New Zealand this happens every year, when winter sports take over from summer sports and summer sports take over from winter sports. Apart from the more obvious weather dependant sports such as skiing or sunbathing, it is totally un-necessary and deprives many followers of the benefits of regular exercise and social contact.


Fencing follows the same pattern, clubs generally close after Nationals, usually held during the last weekend in October (Labour Day weekend) and reopen in February/March – four months! Yet fencing is not weather dependent as is sunbathing and skiing so why the break? It may be the hangover from our cultural past when rugger was a winter sport and cricket a summer outing. One High School lists 24 summer sports and 20 winter sports yet 14 of those sports are on both lists. Most schools in New Zealand still adhere to this programme. In fencing’s case it could be that those volunteers running fencing need a break, but a four-month break? Could it be because fencers themselves need a break? Is it to rest the more competitive types?

Summer fencing camps being held this year in Australia and New Zealand may give lie to those ideas. For example, here in Christchurch thanks to the University of Canterbury Students’ Association, the varsity fencing club decided to hold a Summer School of fencing. The first session saw ten turn out, including one from Germany, and a couple of on-lookers. One of the onlookers has vowed he will be back early January to sign up for the year. On Thursday evening, only days away from Christmas, ten of my pupils gathered under the back verandah to do a bit of fencing. The previous Saturday afternoon, another eight epeeists and a couple of on-lookers turned up at ucfc for more fencing.


So, why close down for the summer? Now get one thing straight, this is not a call for major competitions to be held in mid-summer. Having experienced the January dramas at the junior Aussie nationals held in the old Fencing Factory in Melbourne I would not wish that on anyone, but still people enjoyed themselves. That’s the crux of the matter, enjoyment, most people do fencing for fun and exercise with a bit of socialising thrown in so why do we cut back on their favourite delight just when they have some free time to devote to it? Is it time to change and make fencing an all the year sport?

Have a look at what English Football is doing: Fun Plan





One thing about living at the bottom of the world is you get to celebrate thingies first - so a good christmas and new year to all, but just remember we Kiwis were there first. Have a look at this: A song for you.

No, its not another silly eggplant song, but one on how to bushwhack people and their reactions.


18/12/2010: Its the start of the Silly Season down here at the bottom of the world. Things have been very cold for our Northern Hemisphere readers, though its a balmy 24Deg in ChCh, so here is a Silly Song to take their minds off freezing (they could also try a bit of thrust and parry to get warm!) The Eggplant That Ate Chicago!


15/12/2010: Thomas, France, and Gatland, New Zealand, tussle and twist in China...wingstoo

Next time you take to the air on a long-haul Air New Zealand flight to China it could be piloted by the nation’s newest sword-wielding champion.

Now New Zealand’s latest national senior fencing champion Arthur Gatland, who won the open foil title at last month’s nationals in Dunedin, has been at it again.

The Auckland-based pilot, nicknamed Wings, has just won the Shanghai Power Fencing Club Championships foil title.

Gatland took the title from Pierre-Albert Thomas (France) who had collared it for the last 2 years. – and who Wings managed to beat in the semi-final 15-12 after being 6-1 down. (Pierre is a Shanghai resident, working for the VION food group).

Then it was a straightforward win by 15-6 in the final against the former Netherlands fencer Sean Mei.

The Shanghai club made him an honorary VIP member plus presenting him with a certificate and cake! The question for you dear readers, is what constitutes covering target??


13/12/2010: thepressweelogo A recent article in The Press by its Sports Editor, Kevin Tutty, is worth a read by all officials involved in running minor sports such as fencing. Does what he describes sound familiar? And does what Ken Clearwater proposes appear realistic? Are the minor sports getting a fair suck o’the sav as far as Sparc and other funding agencies are concerned? Anyway, have a read and make up your own mind. Tutt's story.

With a total of around 450 affiliated members – about 200 in Auckland, 100 each in Wellington and Christchurch and 50 in Dunedin - one would think Fencing New Zealand presides over a minnow on the Kiwi sporting galaxy, yet we know there are many more involved in our sport than those figures suggest.

In 2009 the look of consternation of the faces of many Australian officials, when 20-plus Kiwi fencers and officials turned up in Brisbane for the Aussie U17 and U15s, is an indelible memory. An even larger group turned out for the same event this year even garnering an individual medal! Then came the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne and another huge turn out (you can read about their medal haul in earlier postings on this site!), so you cannot say that fencing is on the decline. Turn up at Fencing New Zealand’s annual general meeting in Wellington on February 12 th to show your support and offer your thanks for such a successful year.


11/12/2010: Kiwi passport not good enough for you then try this place - Australia is looking for you! You can get your Aussie passport here: PASSPORT.

A great idea, selling off passports make money for our Ocker mates across the pond, trouble is, is the Government selling?


10/12/2010: German epeeist Jana and Uni fencer Brett Davis after a friendly bout at the University of Canterbury Fencing Club's fencing summer school. The school runs from 1-3pm on Saturday's through to the beginning of February!



9/12/2010: Thinking of a fencing trip over the pond next year? Then here are the dates etc for all the Australian national events. Do note the changes to the Challenge Australia event.

The AFF in conjunction with the host states is pleased to announce the following dates for the National events for 2011.

DH MacKenzie (AFF#1) - Host Queensland - 16th to 18th April
R Chapman (AFF#2) - Host South Australia - 11th to 13th June
Cadet/U15 Nationals - Host Western Australia - 9th to 13th July
AFF#3 - Host Australian Capital Territory - 12th to 14th August
Schools Championship - Host Victoria - 5th October
Junior Nationals - Host Victoria - 6th to 9th October
Open and Veteran Nationals - Host New South Wales - 2nd to 6th December

Challenge Australia will be held on the 24th to 26th June. The format has changed from previous years, for 2011 it will consist of Women's Epee Individual and Team events only.



8/12/2010: SOLD! It is pleasing to know people do visit this site and what a dramatic way to learn they do - the book below sold 24-hours after it was listed on the site - a good result for Rhys at Liberty Books, which like many central ChCh small businesses, is still finding things hard after the September 7.1 earthquake. So go buy a book from him and enjoy a coffee at the Pronto Cafe in New Regent St!

6/12/2010: Christmas is coming and here is a great pressy idea for your favourite fencing friend! bookone

Its on sale at Liberty Books, Christchurch's best second-hand bookshop at 145 Manchester Street, for $65. Say you saw on the FencingMaster website and Rhys or Robyn will give you a discount! Its a hard-copy volume not a cheap reprint.


5/12/2010: Having ranted on about risk management in fencing and how it may be constricting our sport, the Scots have taken an interesting angle about risk - schoolo in the Capital Edinburgh are stopping pupils from playing in the snow! To the extent of incarcerating them in class during play breaks! No playing in the SNOW


3/12/2010: Three Christchurch fencers are off to compete in the Australian National Fencing Championships in Brisbane.

Carla Campbell, Mark Rance and Andreas Sesun will contest the women's and men's epee events in the open section and Rance will also compete in the veterans epee as well.

Campbell and Sesun were the bronze medallists in the corresponding epee evenst at the recent New Zealand national championships in Dunedin.

The trio, along with some other fencers from that wee island to the north of the Mainland (Kyle MacDonald, Chris Lear, Brett Ammundson, William Bishop) are looking forward to facing a combined entry field larger than the total number of fencers in Christchurch and relish the chance of furthering their fencing skills and experiences.

The competition starts on today in the M. A. Howell Sports Centre and Brisbane Grammar School.

You can follow their results at: http: ChCh Fencers; rusults,,,

2/12/2010: While much of New Zealand is basking in sun and warmth - well, we are here in ChCh - at the other end of the world they are buried in snow. This pic, taken across the bridge from Edinburgh, dramatically shows the result of the heaviest snowfall for many, many years. One Inverkeithing resident had to snowboard down Hill
Street with his dog to get his daily steak bridie. Wots a bridie? He says it was quite a struggle walking back up the hill, but well worth it for his bridie! Where's Inverkeithing?



For something different have squizz at this - a neat fencing poster - produced by the Waikato Swords Club. Visit their site: Waikato Swords Club waipost




30/11/2010: Fencing Safety again - how the Swiss do it - fencing in the nude! Have a look here: Nude Fencing and thanks Rob for spotting it!


29/11/2010: “The point about fencing is that it’s one sport where it requires a mixture of skills, so it’s not just the strongest, it’s not just the fastest, it’s not just the cleverest,” Who said that? Read on: Fencing and the Law







PLACE: The Ballroom, University of Canterbury Students Association, 90 Illam Road.

TIME: 1pm to 3pm Saturdays. Seven two-hour sessions teach you the basics needed to enjoy Fencing. This first ucfc summer school will end with a gala competition.

COST: $125 includes your very own fencing glove ucfc provides all gear and instruction.

BOOK: A place now phone Rachel on 348 2550 or 027 449 1970 or e-mail: tiny titch @ (remove the three spaces!)

WHAT TO WEAR: Track pants, t-shirt and sports shoes. Changing rooms on site. All fencing gear; mask, jacket, plastron, and sword are supplied.


Fencing is called the Western martial art and uses space age materials to make it safe for all. The latest electronic devices to keep the score in its lightning fast fights, clothing is made from the same material as stab-proof vests and bullet-proof jackets used by the Police and Military. In fact, the only injury likely to be suffered by the modern fencer is over used muscles from fencing too much. Fencing teaches fitness, discipline and speedy reactions. It is enjoyed all over the world and is one of three sports that have been in the Olympics since their inception.




26/11/2010: Its not cricket.Bat

Taken at Sydenham Park on Saturday it shows a left-handed batsman playing his shot. Is he wearing appropriate safety equipment for his sport? You be the judge.

fielogos Something a bit more interesting, The FIE Executive Committee has just approved the provisional membership of Nepal (NEP). With this addition, the FIE now has 137 member federations.

Cricket has around 37 member federations, Rugby Union around 120 and Netball somewhere between 20 and 70. Sorry cannot be more accurate, but figures vary depending on which national and international site you troll. Which would you call a world-wide sport??



25/11/2010: Christchurch's Big Quake is long past, but the after-shocks keep rolling on - more than 3000 to date and the locals have become so used to them they can judge the strength of each one on the Richter Scale pretty accurately.

Life goes on, fencing too, and plans for the future of both city and fencing are under consideration - For example, there is a meeting of club reps on this coming Monday night, 7pm at the FI, to plan for the future. But for now how about this jewel uncovered by the September 4 quake only metres from the main street of central ChCh..... bog

And no, nobody was enthroned, so to speak, when the walls came down! Our illustrious ancestors did not call it the Thunder Box for nothing!


24/11/2010: IN A GALAXY FAR, FAR AWAY....

Some of you responded to my rant about Fenz safety requirements positively. Another response, rather rude, was what the heck precipitated your rant? Well it was like this long, long ago in a galaxy far, far away a discussion on fencing safety standards at a Fencing MidSouth meeting showed the concern of many that Fenz's unrealistically high standards is limiting participation in our sport.

I used the example of Christchurch Boys High School, where I coach, that the school cannot enter teams in the upcoming Secondary Schools comp because it does not have 800N plastrons or FIE maraging blades though it might manage a team made of individuals with their own 800N gear as happened last year. However if 350N equipment and non-fie blades were accepted then the school could enter four or five teams!

Below is a realistic appraisal of the risks of fencing from an American club La Spada Nimica, one not generated by equipment manufacturers determined to keep raising the safety bar or, by beauraucrats trying to cover arses. Have a look at ACC stats: ACC Fencing is not even mentioned!

(How many cyclists have been killed in New Zealand in the last week?) Now read on .....

“” Newcomers to fencing often express concerns about their safety. Foremost on the minds of many is the question of whether one can be stabbed, possibly even killed while fencing. After all, doesn't fencing have something to do with swords and sword fighting? The image above explains in graphic terms what fencing masters of the past have taught their pupils. The beginning fencer's concerns are reasonable ones.

Like virtually everything in life, fencing comes with risks. To evaluate the risk in a meaningful way it may be helpful to compare the risks inherent in other activities. For example, in 1997 approximately 3,100 adults accidentally inhaled food while eating and choked to death. That same year there were 4000 deaths by drowning in the United States, 14,900 from accidental falls, and 43,200 by motor vehicle accidents (1). There were 36 skiing and snowboarding fatalities in the US during the 1996-97 season, with serious head and spinal injuries occurring at the rate of approximately 29 each year (2). In 1997, 808 bicyclists lost their lives (3) on America's public thoroughfares and more than 80% of 650 mountain bikers who participated in surveys (4-7) were injured in off-road crashes during a one year period. Broken bones consistently accounted for 20% to 30% of the total and brain concussions for 3% to 12% (7-11).

In the United States there has been but a single death caused by a fencing accident. The mishap took place more than a century ago, in 1892, and was caused by a failure of the victim's mask. The most common injuries sustained today by fencers are pulled muscles and trauma to tendons and to the ligaments of the knees and ankles. "Fencer's elbow," a medical problem experienced by some fencers, is also known by tennis players as "tennis elbow," or lateral epicondylitis. Infrequently, a weapon's blade may break posing a serious danger, but sturdy masks and modern fabrics provide excellent protection and have made fencing a very safe activity. Most fencers enjoy fencing throughout their lives without experiencing anything more than an occasional case of muscle soreness. Accidents can befall fencers as they do the adherents of any sport, but chances are that the greatest fencing-realted danger any fencer will ever face will lie in risking a motor vehicle accident while driving to the fencing school.

Fencing Safety Rules

Since it's beginning in 1990 La Spada Nimica has never had an accident. The following safety rules are observed by this school:

a.. Never cross blades, for any reason without first putting on your mask!

b.. Most fencing injuries are from muscle, ligament and tendon trauma. Always warm up before fencing.

c.. Don't wear clothing with holes. A trapped blade in your clothing could cause a serious accident.

d.. Novices may use practice jackets but advanced fencers must wear jackets and underarm protectors.

e.. Men must wear athletic supporters with a protective shield. Women must wear breast protectors.

f.. Legs must be protected with sweat pants, trousers or fencing breeches.

g.. Be aware of your surroundings. Don't step out onto the active floor without looking to be sure it's safe.

h.. When fencing, do not drive your opponent into the wall or a hazard in your eagerness to win a touch.

i.. Inspect your weapon periodically; see that the blade's curve is uniform and that the button is secure.

j.. Be mindful of your fencing distance; don't fence too close!

k.. If you are repeatedly colliding with your opponent, stop fencing until you can correct the error.

l.. Aggressive fencing is OK; violent, uncontrolled fencing is not. Nothing you do should cause pain or harm.

m.. When hit, don't point at the area, with your finger, but simply, immediately, acknowledge the touch in a clear, audible voice.

n.. First, last and always, never - EVER - cross blades unless you have first


References for accident data cited above:

a.. National Safety Council

b.. National Ski Areas Association: Lakewood, Colo.

c.. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

d.. Chow TK, Bracker MD, Patrick K: Acute injuries from mountain biking. West J Med 1993;159(2):145-148””

e.. Pfeiffer RP: Injuries in NORBA pro/elite category off-road bicycle competitors. Cycling Sci 1993;5(1):21-24

f.. Pfeiffer RP: Off-road bicycle racing injuries: the NORBA pro/elite category. Clin Sports Med1994;13(1):207-218

g.. Kronisch RL, Rubin AL: Traumatic injuries in off-road bicycling. Clin J Sport Med 1994;4(4):240-244

h.. Pfeiffer RP, Kronisch RL: Off-road cycling injuries, an overview. Sports Med 1995;19(5):311-325

i.. Kronisch RL, Chow TK, Simon LM, et al: Acute injuries in off-road bicycle racing. Am J Sports Med 1996;24(1):88-93

j.. Kronisch RL, Pfeiffer RP, Chow TK: Acute injuries in cross-country and downhill off-road bicycle racing. Med Sci Sports Exerc 1996;28(11):1351-1355

k.. Rivara FP, Thompson DC, Thompson RS, et al: Injuries involving off-road cycling. J Fam Pract 1997;44(5):481- 485


22/11/2010: If you want to know what former fencers get up to when they leave the sport have a look here: Shanghai Lady Killer or here: Buru - yes, I know its a former Christchurch fencer, but you are free to send gos and pix about others.


20/11/2010: Minimum Equipment levels.

Fencing is a very safe sport and there have been no serious accidents in New Zealand. The intention of the various organizations which run fencing in the New Zealand is to encourage participation AND safety. However the safety standards that are presently posted on the Fenz website cause much confusion among parents and beginner fencers especially the bit about the use of FIE blades – if you use a size three blade you can turn up at Nationals with 350N gear??

Safety Seen

Safety in fencing is a simple matter of applying basic fundamental rules. For example fencing any weapon would be considered unsafe without a mask. Nor would fencing without a jacket and glove covering the opening of cuff of the jacket. Nor would you fence close to people or spectators who are NOT wearing a mask. But should fencers be loaded down with armour from top to toe just to prevent a possible welt or bruise? After all, fencing is a fighting sport and sensible precautions prevent serious accidents and encourage participation.

Now before the politically correct safety szars get their knickers in a twist, let’s have a realistic look at things. In very hot climates people wear the bare minimum of clothing for a reason, comfort and enjoyment of sport? Ever hear of a sabreur being injured while training in shorts? Ever heard back from a raw beginner who was made to dress up in heavy clothing and fence in a stifling hall? Wonder why the FIE is recommending air-conditioned halls for hosting FIE competitions in hot places? Nor could I find information about fencing related accidents on the Accident Compensation Corporation’s website which suggest there were none. Have a look at the cycling or rugby statistics!

How do you balance participation with safety? How do you explain to parents and beginner fencers who are struggling to finance their ‘new sport’ the difference in safety between a 350N and 800N plastrons or jacket? Is there any research to show that there ‘IS’ a difference in safety between the $40 350N plastron and a $260 800N one? What is the difference in safety between an FIE stamped blade and an unstamped one? This is a question I am continually asked by parents, why do they have to spend so much for, apparently, so little? Will spending more save little Tommy or Susan from a welt or bruise or a bad accident? What we do know is that some are put off our great sport because of the cost!

So here are a few suggested changes to the present gear requirements, posted on the Fenz website, in an effort to explain the MINIMUM requirements for safe fencing and to encourage MORE participation in our sport. What say you all?

Clubs: Are free to set their own levels of equipment bearing in mind the above suggestions and that they fence under a controlled regime.

Competitions: Between clubs, CE 350 N Jacket; plastron; mask; with britches or trousers that fasten below the knee and normal, non-FIE, weapons – foil, epee or sabre

Competitions run by Fencing MidSouth or other regional organisation: CE 350N jacket; plastron; mask; plus trousers that fasten below the knee, ditto blades as above.

Competitions run by Fencing New Zealand such as North Island and South Island championships, Nationals: CE 350 N (or better) mask; jacket; plastron; trousers and the use of non-FIE electric blades. All finalists to wear CE 800N jacket; plastron; trousers; 1600N masks plus FIE certified blades. (This will encourage intermediate fencers to have a try at ‘’National’’ events boosting numbers and indirectly giving them a reason to invest in the more expensive gear – they might make a final!) National age groups would be all 350N and non-FIE weapons as a matter of course. Participation is the name of the game not restriction!

International competitions hosted by Fenz such as Oceania’s or World cups: As required by the FIE.

Now that’s not too painful, is it?


19/11/2010: More Pix From Nationals:

Thanks for your flattering comments about the photos and your comments about the lack of medal pictures - which is normal on this site - are noted. In the trade they are called grin-and-grips, people standing there grinning at the camera and holding a medal! They are anathema to many photographers including this one. Those taken in action or on the fly, so to speak, prove to be the most interesting! Now, there is a pix of nationals organiser Dave Barston.......

BELOW: Action from Anna and Nancy in the women's epee..... wepee

AND: Ping Yuan psyches up for the women's foil....... ping

About that pix of Dave, keep watching!

And here it is. Dave enjoys a brief moment of the quiet before the storm..dave

So do the spectators. Are you here?specs




18/11/2010: Meet the youngest senior national fencing champion and one of the oldest still competing.

Dunedin fencer Ted Nye is 84 and has been involved in our ancient art and modern sport for more that 60 of those years.tednye

Born in Leige, Belgium, in 1926, of English parents, he returned to the United Kingdom just before the start of the Second World War and served three years as a gunner in a coastal defence battery.

Ted started fencing at University, the Northern Polytech Institute, London, then went on to study medicine at Barts (St Bartholemews Hospital) before coming to New Zealand in 1960 as associate professor on medicine at Otago Medical School.

He took lessons from a few coaches among them former Olympic fencer Jerzy Zabielski. Ted, fenced all three weapons and you can catch up on some of his exploits by Googling his name.

Christchurch fencer and Christchurch Girls High School year nine pupil, Hannah Ramsay, won the senior women's sabre event at the 2010 fencing nationals. ididit

At 14 years and three months, that makes her the youngest ever in any of the weapons used in modern fencing, beating her CBHS/CGHS fencing club-mate Alex Chan who held the honour after winning the senior men's sabre event in 2007 at 14 years and five months. Hannah is also the current Oceania U20 champion.



15/11/2010: n2010too

Medallists from the 2010 New Zealand National Fencing Championships held in Dunedin 13 to 15 th November.

Women’s Epee. Francoise Herren (Dunedin) 1st; Nancy Liu (Auckland) 2 nd; Anna Soboleva and Carla Campbell (both Christchurch) 3 rd=.

Men’s Sabre. Luke Robertson (Christchurch) 1 st, Luke Crozier (Wellington) 2 nd, Alex Chan (Christchurch) and Tony Culliford (New Plymouth) 3 rd=.

Men’s Foil. Arthur Gatland (Auckland) 1 st, Hamish Clarke (Christchurch) 2 nd , Chris Bell and Julius Herzhoff (both Christchurch) 3r=.

Men’s Epee. Graham Payne (Timaru) 1 st, Brett Davis (Christchurch) 2 nd, Andreas Sesun (Christchurch) and William Bishop (Wellington) 3 rd-.

Women’s Sabre. Hannah Ramsay (Christchurch) 1 st, Nancy Liu (Auckland) 2 nd, Carla Campbell (Christchurch) and Jhy Wong (Dunedin) 3 rd=.

Women’s Foil. Ping Yuan (Wellington) 1 st, Sally McCance (Christchurch) 2 nd, Rachel Rowlands (Christchurch) and Nancy Liu (Auckland) 3 rd=.

The Otago Daily Times ran a great story with pictures of fencers in action and Dave Barson in Saturday's edition read it here .. plus a great story and pix on the men's epee final which you can read here: ODT and here is ODT photographer Craig Baxter taking photo of ....???manatwork .. first correct response gets a Morris Minor keyring!

Below: And, here is a new take on the expression," giving the fingers!" Nancy, Francoise, Anna and Carla before their medals presentation in the womens epee. fingers

Below: About to be foil champion Arthur Gatland takes a snap of the women's epee action. In the background is the ziggurat, a fearsome raised finals piste, which terrified some fencers and which was dismantled and not used after organisers responded to their safety concerns.wotsup

Below: The most exciting event at Nationals was the epee final between Graham Payne and Brett Davis. The pair were evenly matched and traded the lead several times. Left-handed Graham found Brett's attacks at wrist a problem, but kept his head and held his sword arm higher than usual to counteract Brett's height and reach and took the lead again at 14 - 13,epone but Brett managed to even the score 14 all by pushing Graham off the piste. Then back on guard and the wily 56-year-old snatches the final point and his first national championship.epeetoo

Below: A quick lesson in sabre fencing. When is an attack in sabre not an attack? When it starts with a bent arm! sabat

So, what do you do against a bent-arm attack? Stop hit or counter-attack. Here ends the lesson ably demonstrated by Luke Robertson and Alex Chan.

MTC (more to come).


(Fencing continues with team events today. A full rankings list will be posted as soon as it is received from the exhausted organisers. Pix and comment to come, so come back soon!)


11/11/2010: n2010

The 67 th New Zealand National Fencing Championships takes place this weekend at the Lion Foundation Arena in the Edgar Centre in the southern city of Dunedin.

It should be nationals number 72 for the championships started in Christchurch in 1938, but a slight contrempts known as the Second World War, got in the way - an interesting fact since the First World War ended this day, Armastice Day, in 1918.

The individual finals start each day at 5.30pm. Have a look here: NATIONALS for results and a timetable of events.


9/11/2011: A link to the RESULTS of the World Fencing Championships in Paris - just for Hannah in the Black Forest! Check out Kiwi fencer Jess Beer's results.


8/11/2010: Bit slack with the responses dear readers, only three, not good, perhaps more VikSpam is needed?

For the size of its population New Zealand has a great number of World Champions and former champions in many sports - Hugh Anderson was one, remember him? But none in fencing so we have to make do with those fencing World Champions with even the slightest connection the New Zealand Here's one....Champ From left to right are; Francesco Tiberi, Comencini Nicola, Dei Franco, Maurizio Galvan, Gaetano Danzi and Nando Capelli, the Italian masters fencing association president. ciao!

See how Maurizio won his FOURTH world foil championship: World Vets - Our tenuous claim to greatness in fencing is that Maurizio ran a foil training camp in Christchurch in 2007 before winning his third world championship in Sydney.

And have a peek here for more on a Kiwi World champion: Hugh Anderson.


1/11/2010: Get your hands dirty??? Get your gear ready for Nationals! hands

With Nationals coming up many of you will be thinking of checking your equipment to make sure it passes the safety inspection. Some of you might even give your uniform a quick wash to reduce the stench of hours of sweaty fencing!

However it is not the safety and smell aspects of fencing gear that are the only considerations. There is the matter of the resistance. Of weapons, body-wires, masks and lames. If resistance is too high they fail!

So how do you test the resistance? Easy, buy a multimeter. Jaycar, for example, Jaycar have one for less than $20.

Measuring resistance with a DIGITAL multimeter, this is what the Electronic Club at: MeasureMe Recommends…

  1. Set the meter to a resistance range greater than you expect the resistance to be.
    Notice that the meter display shows "off the scale" (usually blank except for a 1 on the left). Don't worry, this is not a fault, it is correct - the resistance of air is very high!
  2. Touch the meter probes together and check that the meter reads zero.
    If it doesn't read zero, turn the switch to 'Set Zero' if your meter has this and try again. (If it does not zero you can deduct the initial resistance figure from the final figure obtained - eg first reading is 2.6 ohms, test figure 3 ohms, real figure is .6 ohms, well under the 1 ohm allowable.)
  3. Put the probes across the component and measure.
    ( Avoid touching more than one contact at a time or your resistance will upset the reading!)

What are the resistance requirements for fencing gear?

Lames: The electrical resistance measured between any two points of the lamé material must not be greater than 5 ohms. The resistance will be measured by using a 500 g copper or brass weight which has a hemispherical end with a radius of 4 mm. This weight, placed on this end and moved about on the lamé, must maintain continuous contact with a maximum resistance of 5 ohms. (Make sure the tester does NOT use the pointed probes normally found on a multimeter for testing lame jackets and bibs as they can give a false reading.)

Weapons/bodywires: The electrical resistance of each of the conductive wires (plug to plug and plug to crocodile clip) must not exceed 1 ohm. (Also watch out for the internal resistance of the weapon – 1 ohm too. Sabreurs and epeeists make sure your blades and guards are corrosion/dirt-free!!! Plastic abrasive pot cleaners make a good substitute for sandpaper.)

Clothing: Below are the Minimum Equipment Standards for FeNZ Competitions:

Fencers using size 3 blades or smaller (e.g. U13)









Long Trousers (openings zipped/taped closed)


(350N bib)


ALL other Fencers












(350N bib)

FeNZ hosted Tournament with international component (e.g. Oceanics)












(1600N bib)

FIE foil and epee blades / S2000 sabre blades also required for all for all tournaments except those with size 3 blades or smaller – i.e. in line with FIE requirements.


  • Tournaments overseas (eg Australia) will have their own equipment requirements dependent on the Fencing Federation and the type of tournament. 
  • These standards are intended for New Zealand ONLY. 
  • It will be expected that where a fencer can use equipment of a higher standard – eg 800N or breeches rather than long trackpants, then they will do so.
(Please, please do not contact me about the above standards for clothing and blades, but contact Fenz direct with your queries.)


29/10/2010: Making plans for next year? Here is a list of term dates and holidays for secondary schools.

Secondary and composite schools

This table shows term start and end dates schools must use.


Start date

End date


Between Monday 31 January (at the earliest) and Monday 7 February (at the latest)

Friday 15 April (100 to 110 half-days)


Monday 2 May

Friday 15 July (108 half-days)


Monday 1 August

Friday 7 October (100 half-days)


Tuesday 25 October

No later than Tuesday 13 December (72 half-days)*

* Or to a day in December which ensures that the school has been open for instruction for 380 half-days in 2011.

2011 holidays

Schools must be closed in 2011 on Saturdays and Sundays, and on these days:

  • New Years Day - 1 January
  • Day after New Years Day - 2 January
  • Waitangi Day - 6 February (Sunday)
  • Good Friday - 22 April
  • Easter Monday - 25 April
  • Day after Easter Monday - 26 April (Tuesday)
  • Anzac Day - 25 April
  • Queen's Birthday - 6 June (Monday)
  • Labour Day - 24 October (Monday)
  • Christmas Day - 25 December
  • Boxing Day - 26 December

And the relevant Anniversary Day holiday as below.

Anniversary Day holidays 2011


Day and date

Occurs within


Monday 31 January

school holidays


Monday 14 March

Term 1

Hawkes Bay

Friday 21 October

school holidays


Monday 24 January

school holidays


Monday 31 October

Term 4


Monday 31 January

school holidays


Friday 11 November

Term 4

Canterbury (South)

Monday 26 September

Term 3


Monday 5 December

Term 4


Monday 21 March

Term 1


Monday 17 January

school holidays

Chatham Islands

Monday 28 November

Term 4

Read more, school terms up to 2014, at: MinofEd



26/10/2010: The Duel at Dawn is the University of Canterbury Fencing Club's final session for the year.

It is, generally, an excuse for club members and former members to have a good time and a nosh-up and an AGM at a local cafe or restaurant. About 20 turned up including some former members among them Rangi and Clare.

It is also a chance to strike fear into the hearts of local folks - though this lot at New Brighton on Saturday did not seem afraid of Brett Davis..... Ugh

Nor did the duelling antics of Rachel and Rachel (are there too many Rachels involved fencing???) on the Mew Brighton pier disturb the sleepy sea-side suburb too much!.....officials




The celebration in September of the 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow, that weren’t the 1980 Olympic Games, raises an interesting point about political interference and intimidation.

The manager of the fencing section was phoned early one morning in Christchurch from someone purporting to represent the Wellington Police and warned about letter bombs in his mailbox!

Upon reflection, he was still groggy with sleep when he answered the phone, he thinks he should have asked a few questions for he now believes it was a hoax call. Still the threat of letter bombs in cosy 1980 New Zealand showed how far certain people were prepared to go.

Did the threat work? No! The manager had already resigned as he was unable to get any coherent direction about what was going on and what he was expected to do from those running Fencing New Zealand and the New Zealand Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association at the time. Read the earlier post of what Martin Brill said about the shambles over how he was informed that he was not competing in Moscow.

For more about this politically screwed sporting event from a Kiwi point of view have a look at: Kiwi view

Or, from a general view: Wiki's view rings



13/10/2010: Commonwealth Fencing Champs videos.... have a look here: CFC videos


From exaltation to execution....



Christchurch fencer Jonathan Chan is traveling in Europe with his camera and companion. You can follow their travels here: Jono's Blog



weelogo Lies, damned lies and statistics is one of those statements that cannot be attributed to anyone in particular but is used by people to disparage statistics that do not support their positions. However whatever way you use the numbers generated by the actions of Kiwi fencers at the recent Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne, their performances have got to be the best ever in fifty years?

Number of fencers – 40 (38?)

Number of medals – 9

Number of first places – 2

Number of last places – 4

Number of women fencers – 15

Number of medals won by women – 5

Number of male fencers – 23

Number of medals won by them – 4

Number of young (open) fencers – 27

Number of medals won by them – 3

Number of older (veteran) fencers – 11

Number of medals won by them - 6

What conclusions YOU draw from the numbers presented above is up to you and do let us know, but the figures speak for themselves.

Now, the question is dear fencers, how would YOU construct a fair ranking system and what would YOU want included in a positive selection policy??? Of course I'll post your replies here, but I am sure YOUR regional body and Fenz would like them too, so include them on your spam list.


7/10/2010: Garth Shillito v Fencing New Zealand
(ST 13/10) Decsion 1 September 2010; Reasons for Decision 29 September 2010

Appeal against decision of NSO - non selection for NZ team - S appealed decision of Fencing NZ (FNZ) not to select him for NZ Men's Open Sabre Team to compete in Commonwealth Fencing Championships 2010 - whether selection process followed and selection criteria properly applied - S pointed to his NZ ranking of 3rd as justifying place in 5 person team - also complained that not all of selected team had competed in all competitions identified as counting towards selection and one member of team resident in Australia and his selection on team was based on results in Australian competitions - also raised questions concerning whether discriminated against on basis of age - FNZ argued deficiencies in ranking system gave S higher ranking than warranted, selectors had to consider prediction of athlete performance in competition as well as rankings/results, and results of Australian resident fencer justified his inclusion in team.

Tribunal could not conclude that FNZ failed to follow selection policy - ranking and results in specified tournaments were primary selection criteria but were not exclusive in determining relative performance of fencers - prediction of potential performance in championships also to be considered - matter for selectors what weighting they placed on various competitions and results, including Australian competitions - Tribunal would have to identify clear errors in selection process to intervene and considered no obvious failure by selectors here but rather a judgment call on relative performance - Tribunal concerned over whether age had been factor in not selecting S, which it could not be under selection policy, but ultimately considered this was not the reason for his non-selection - While appeal dismissed, S had properly brought his appeal and exposed matters wanting in FNZ selection policy - Tribunal made comments on what a clear selection policy should contain.

More at: Sports Tribunal


There is an old saying, “There’s many a good tune played on an old fiddle." attributed to the novelist and poet Samuel Butler. For the youngsters among the readers it means, don’t write off the oldies, and boy didn’t Kiwi fencers produce the goods at the 2010 Commonwealth Fencing Championships in both the Open and Veterans events.

The results were a staggering nine medals, three in the open events and six in the veterans: Ping Yuan (Wellington) - Gold for Senior Women's Foil. Susan Grant-Taylor (Wellington) - Silver for Veteran Women's Foil. Jessica Beer - Silver for Senior Women's Epee. Fiona McDonald (Dunedin) - Bronze for Veteran Women's Foil (Gold for age group). Kyle MacDonald (Auckland) - Bronze for Veteran Men's Epee. Mark Rance (Christchurch) - Bronze for Veteran Men's Epee. Silver - Men’s Veteran Foil Team. Silver – Men’s Veteran Epee Team,.and Bronze – Womens Epee Team.

Plus there were more spectators at the 2010 Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne than we have seen attending events at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi up to now.

And before you non-fencers and lawn bowlers knock the Kiwi medal haul as being inferior to those, we hope, will be garnered at the Delhi games, bear in mind that there were fencers from 19 countries! Australia, Barbados, Cameroon, Canada, England, Guernsey, India, Isle of Man, Jersey, Malaysia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Sierra Leone, Singapore, South Africa, Wales and Brunei.

Perhaps fencing should be back in the Commonwealth Games?


5/10/2010: They finish tonight, but the story, so far, is tremendous news for Kiwi fencers competing at the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne:

Ping Yuan - Gold for Senior Women's Foil

Susan Grant-Taylor - Silver for Veteran Women's Foil

Jessica Beer - Silver for Senior Women's Epee

Fiona McDonald - Bronze for Veteran Women's Foil (Gold for age group)

Kyle MacDonald - Bronze for Veteran Men's Epee

Mark Rance - Bronze for Veteran Men's Epee

Silver - Men’s Veteran Foil Team.

Now to celebrate the end, here is a pix of the beginning:opening


4/10/2010: Goody, goody, old Aunty Herald has got into the act by publishing something about the Commonwealth Fencing Championships being held across the water in Melbourne. Even a couple of radio stations managed a murmur - well done all. Have a look at:

Aunty Herald




crampHere's something not covered by the media. Kiwi gold medal foilist, Ping Yuan, receives treatment for cramp before her finals bout with Scotland's Lisa McKenzie which she won 11-10.


3/10/2010: Flying Fankie makes it two in eight years!!flyingfrankie

CF foil champion in 2002 in Newcastle and 2010 in Melbourne!

Plus there have been more medals for Kiwi fencers too:


Ping Yuan - Gold for Senior Women's Foil
Susan Grant-Taylor - Silver for Veteran Women's Foil
Jessica Beer - Silver for Senior Women's Epee
Fiona McDonald - Bronze for Veteran Women's Foil (Gold for age group)
Kyle MacDonald - Bronze for Veteran Men's Epee
Mark Rance - Bronze for Veteran Men's Epee

Starting tomorrow you will be feasting on every sniffle, tear and heartbreak as our Kiwi athletes at the Delhi Games strive to do their best, let alone win, but across the Tasman Kiwi fencers are doing their best and winning more medals than they ever done before, though you wouldn't know it if you have been reading the newspapers, watching the TV sports news or listening to the radio - Zilch!

Apart from the nation's best broadsheet daily, The Press, there has been little recognition that our fencers are even in Melbourne for the Commonwealth Fencing Championships, let alone winning medals. So far one gold, two silver and three bronze medals with more to come today and tomorrow!


2/10/2010: MOREMEDALS MOREMEDALS MOREMEDALS MOREMEDALS .... More Medals for Kiwi Fencers at the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne yesterday.

Silver to Wellington Fencer, Susan Grant-Taylor in the Veteran Women’s Foil and Bronze to Dunedin Fencer, Fiona McDonald, who also won the 40-49 age group in the same event.

Copyright, anyone know the copyright law? It could save you a lot of embarrassment and money. Copyright basics

So, don't flog pix off this site, and others, without permission!!

1/10/2010: GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD GOLD ..... while things go from worse to not so bad at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi our Kiwi fencers are fighting their hearts out across the Tasman in Melbourne.

Wellington foilist Ping Yuan won the gold medal in the women's senior foil event at the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne yesterday.

Yuan fences out of the Hutt Valley Fencing Club.

Full results at:

Expect further medals in the teams events.

30/9/2010: RESULTS: cfcmelb

Click here.....



29/9/2010: Find out what she is thinking...lucyl

Visit: Lucy's Place.


28/9/2010: Fencing gear for sale:


Right-handed mans size, 1600N Uhlmann mask, 800N Uhlmann jacket and plastron and four FIE bladed pistol grip foils.


Small womens right-handed Leon Paul lame and mask, two electric sabres, three bodywires and small glove and sabre cuff.

First in, best dressed! Contact below for prices etc.


27/9/201: ddthirteen

Hurrah! The Uni Fencing Club returns to the Ballroom at the Univerity of Canterbury Students building on Illam Road this SATURDAY! All welcome........


26/9/2010: Kiwi Fencers in Melbourne??? Then send an e-mail to NZ fencers at: Go Kiwis Fencers will be arriving from Monday on at the Quest SXY, in Melbourne.


25/9/2010: Who is coming? Where is the fencing? Does such and such a country have a team? You can answer all these question and more by going to: Commonwealth Fencing Championships.

There are lots of people leaving quake-struck Christchurch. Who is this person caught heading north on his Ducati?? Name him and you get first dibs at the fencing gear he has left behind!!DenverSee also, Get out of Denver, by the Bob Seger System: Get out of ChCh!


22/9/2010: National Fencing Champs in Dunedin, November 13 to 15th enter here: Nationals 2010

Even if you are not thinking of coming to fence have a look for it has to to be the best promotion of our nationals since they started in 1938! So, cummon you pesky fencers, come have a good time!

21/9/2010: Ucfc fencers enjoy their, temporary, new home at Avonside Girls High School. leadertoo

While ucfc President Rachel organises the transfer of fencing gear from Ballroom to Gym leaderone

Ucfc will meet at AGHS again this weekend from 11am to 1pm - all welcome!



cfclogo While the 19 th Commonwealth Games in Delhi degenerates into confusion and disarray the Commonwealth Open and Veterans Fencing Championships will calmly go ahead in Melbourne from September 29 th to the 5 th of October.

A huge team of 40 Kiwi fencers will join those from 14 other countries at the brand new State Fencing Centre in Arden Street, North Melbourne. Among the large team being sent by Fencing New Zealand for the open events are seven from Christchurch; Chris Bell, Alex Chan, Hamish Clarke, Sally McCance, Mark Rance, Luke Robertson and Andreas Sesun. Two others, Rachel Rowlands and Eoin Queen were selected as non-travelling reserves.

Chan, aged 17 and a pupil at Christchurch Boys High School, is the youngest member of the team and will be fencing in the sabre events along with an old boy of the school, Luke Robertson.

Fencing starts on September 30 th with foil and sabre events and ends on Tuesday October 5 th with foil and epee teams events You can follow the results of our fencers at:

Here is the list of Kiwi fencers:


EPEE (OPEN) MEN; BISHOP William NZL, JONGKEES Seino NZL ,MACDONALD Kyle NZL, RANCE Mark, NZL SESUN Andreas NZL. WOMEN; BEER Jessica NZL, FAN Yafei Sheryl NZL, JACKSON Jennifer NZL, LIU Ju-Wei Nancy NZL, TAYLOR Katherine NZL. VETS, MEN; AMMUNDSEN Brett NZL 40 – 49, COLEMAN Terry NZL 60 – 69, CUNCANNON Tony NZL 50 – 59, GATLAND Arthur NZL 60 – 69, MACDONALD Kyle NZL 40 – 49, MILLER Andrew NZL 40 – 49, RANCE Mark NZL 40 – 49. WOMEN; GRANT-TAYLOR Susan NZL 50 – 59.



20/9/2010: Every one a coconut!

Finally, someone got round to asking about the GIFTS that Kiwi fencers received from the FIE. Have a look at the photo posted on 24/8 and you will see two shiny new aluminium pistes gleaming in the foreground. A flash scoring box came with them too. No doubt they will be traveling the country to be used at national events.


15/9/2010: New (temporary) home for the University of Canterbury Fencing Club at Avonside Girls High School. unilogo

Our classes have been moved to 11am-1pm to give you more time to get there. I can carpool 3 people if you meet me at the University at 10:20am. Can anyone else carpool other people? The 84 and 60 buses go past if that is a better option for you. If you are driving you need to come in from Avonside drive, the entrance near Woodham road. I have a key to let you into the carpark but I need to lock it behind you.

Just let me know if you need to know anything else and contact me if you can carpool people.

There will be fencing on this Saturday!


President, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.


14/8/2010: After a stressful week in the Garden City (or what remains of it) fencing is slowly getting back to normal:

CFA was in action last night.

United is back in action at Avonside Girls High School tonight at the usual time.

The Sabre Club meets again this Wednesday.

The FI is still functioning.

University, is the poor cousin, as the Ballroom it uses has been expropriated by the University's Library - so no fencing there until further notice!

The ten schools with fencing should also be back in action this week, check your school's website to confirm.

Keep fencing .... and spread the good news among your fencers...........Oh, by the way, helpers are needed for the MidSouth u17 and u15s - no helpers equals no competition so signup now through your club or e-mail me and I will pass your name on to the organiser.

13/9/2010: Amid the rubble and after-shocks of quake-stricken Christchurch ten sabreurs turned out for the Sabre Camp.

Organised by the Sabre Club to prepare those sabreurs heading for the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne later this month. Unlike last year's camp which was aimed at general development this camp focused on five-hit bouting and fitness.

The turnout of such a large contingent from the North Island was a great fillip to those shake shocked Cantabrians.

Doing a bit of their own shaking are; Keith, Katie, Michael, Luke, Garth, Sasha, Luke, Hannah, Alex and Eoin.jumpone

Others who made an appearance were; James, Anthony, Susan, Carla and Katherine.

You can follow our sabreurs (and epeeists and foilists too) in their hunt for medals at: Melbourne CFC


8/9/2010: Heard the latest earthquake joke: How do you make a milk-shake in Christchurch? Leave a partially used container of milk on the bench overnight!

One thing about the Quake and its hundreds of after-shocks is that it has shaken loose another North Island fencer to come to this weekend's Sabre Camp - don't forget your running shoes Luke!!

Want to see more about the Quake? Look at: Canterbury Quakes And if you want to keep an eye on the venue for the sabre camp, enlarge the map, focus in on the suburb of Addington and the fencing venue is the building between Jack Hinton Drive and Rugby League Park. It was once the kitchen and dining room of the former Agricultural and Pastoral Association which was based there many years ago.



It takes more than a 7.1 earthquake to knock out fencing.....

Diane Swain has just rung to say that there will be no fencing at the United fencing Club.
(Avonside Girls High School) on Tuesday night. Avonside Drive was one of the worst hit areas in Christchurch

However there will be some training, weather
permitting, at the Olga Jeykll Salle (my place) starting 6.30pm for
those dedicated enough to turn up! This will include electric fencing!!!

The Sabre Sessions will take place on Wednesday (and the Sabre Club
meeting later!) at the venue and the Sabre Camp will also be taking
place on the weekend.

Those turning up for the Sabre Camp, so far - Alex Chan, Mike Mercer, Sasha Green, Eoin Queen, Luke Robertson, Hannah Ramsay, Katherine Taylor, Katie Logan, Garth Shillito and Susan Fourie. Among the fencing fodder they will face will be two former national sabre champions, a top Pommie import and other sundry sabreurs all dedicated to helping our men and women sabreurs prepare for the Commonwealth Fencing Campionships in Melbourne.

Entries still being accepted - see previous posting for details!!


3/9/2010: They say that Politics and Sport never mix, but sadly they do as a story in today’s The Press about Kiwi fencer Martin Brill points out: Olympic Uniform


Once you have read the story have a go at answering these two questions. 1. What is the tracksuit Martin is wearing in the pix above? And 2. Who was the Manager for Fencing for the 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow? Hint, he/she also comes from Christchurch! Morris Minor keychains for the first correct answers.



26/8/2010: Quick as a flash there was an e-mail questioning what a group of old rockers

have to do with fencing. Answer, one of them was a fencer many years ago. Question, which one??

Talking of old fencing news, have a look at this story from the Odious Daily Twaddle (the nick-name given by Dunedinites to their newspaper, The Otago Daily Times): Dave Barson


25/8/2010: Old musicians are like old fencers - they keep on going.... so do go and hear them!oldfarts

In 1986 the band started as three friends meeting every Tuesday evening to jam in the old band rotunda by the Avon, the music wafting out on the warm summer breeze drew an audience of curious and appreciative listeners, thus the band was born.

Like all new bands they needed a name and inspiration came one Friday while busking in Cashel Street. They were brothers ( in music) and we were standing on the pavement which was made of asphalt, when one of them said "We could be the Asphalt Brothers", just like that, out loud, and he was right.

They have played on trains, trailers, bridges and band rotundas, for weddings, conferences, festivals, for twenty people and twenty thousand.

The current four piece line up still features two of the original members with the third making the occasional welcome guest appearance.

They play and like music from a broad sound scape and enjoy mixing it up, after breaking the rules to give songs a new twist, most of all we do it for he fun and pleasure it brings us and the audience.#

The line up is.

Alan Farrow 6 & 12 string guitars, B/vocals
Lynden (Sleepy) Jackson Drums, lead vocals, harp, trumpet
Stephen (Chad) Chadfield 4, 6 and upright string bass, lead vocals
William Hill mandolin, guitar,dobro, harp, lead vocals


24/8/2010: Free gifts for Kiwi fencers you ask? What gifts? Where are they? Well, here's a hint: gift


23/8/2010: The number of fencers in the Nation has increased dramatically - by one! A daughter, Zsophia, to fencers Marguerite and Rangi de Abaffy, early this morning. No indication yet whether Zsophia is left or right-handed.


21/8/2010: Have you received your gift from Fencing New Zealand yet??

The Federation International de Escrime has provided gifts for all Kiwi fencers and the gifts are in the country now – what! You have not heard about them?? Then ask your club officials about them and find out what the FIE has given you! Quick, before someone else grabs them……

Those that turned up at South Island Championships would have seen some of them.


20/8/2010: Talking to a dad who brings his son to the Sabre Sessions on Wednesday nights and we got talking about 12-string guitarist Leo Kotkke. Whats a 12-string guitar and who is Leo Kotkke asked one of our top sabruers - have a look here: Leo Kotkke

13/8/2010: Another have sword will travel story.


Long-haul pilot Arthur Gatland takes his sports gear with him and often fences at the Shanghai Power Fencing Club. Recently they invited him to represent them in their foil team for the 2010 China Amateur Fencing Competition (Shanghai) over the weekend 7/8 August. The canny Aucklander managed to arrange an Air NZ flying duty that saw him fly overnight, arriving in Shanghai at 7.30am on the Saturday, followed by a somewhat scary high-speed taxi ride 65km to Songjiang in the Shanghai suburbs while he changed into fencing gear in the back seat. He arrived with 5 minutes to spare before the 9.00am start of the individual foil competition where a good first round saw him seeded 4th after the pools, with a final result of 3=.

In the teams event on the Sunday there were 4 teams from various parts of China competing and Arthur’s team finished up representing the Guangzhou Fencing Club - a long story he says - and after a couple of close matches they finished in 2nd place.


This event proved great fun and he was made to feel very welcome by organisers and competitors (very few of whom could speak much English but still better than his Mandarin.) Matches were refereed in Chinese except when Arthur, or one of the three other ex-pats, were fencing when they used standard French. Outside air temperature was 38 C and though the gym had some air conditioning it was still very warm!!


9/8/2010: A nifty use for a sword....... swordbike

Read who made it - see Archives for 2008, 5/8/2008!


Have sword, will travel. Christchurch fencer Lucy Stewart is off to America.

Lucy A member of the nation’s oldest fencing organisation, the University of Canterbury Fencing Club, Lucy has been awarded a Fulbright-Ministry of Research, Science and Technology Graduate Award to study microbiology at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Originally a foilist from Wellington, Lucy has spent the last five years adapting to epee while completing a BSc (Hons) in microbiology and a BA in history at Canterbury.

Lucy's PhD will take her around five years to complete, after which she hopes to bring her research back to New Zealand. She believes that Much of the really interesting astrobiology research - at least in relation to microbiology - is done in the United States and Europe, even though most of the field trips are to environments like Antarctica or the undersea volcanic vents that her lab studies. She would really love to see more New Zealand-based research in this area – for Christchurch is one of the major gateways to the Antarctic.

Fulbright-Ministry of Research, Science and Technology Graduate Awards are offered by the US and New Zealand governments to help New Zealand students who are studying in areas of importance to this country’s growth and innovation to undertake postgraduate study in the United States. Approximately ten awards are given out each year.

And yes, Amherst has a fencing club so Lucy will be able to take to the piste whenever she wants after her arrival in late August.


2/8/2010: Caveat Emptor or Let The Buyer Beware!

At a recent major fencing competition I was bailed-up by the irate father of a young fencer who was demanding to see the President and Secretary of Fencing New Zealand. Both Ken and Fiona were unavailable, but the Dad seemed so steamed-up that I took him aside to hear his problem.

‘’It’s the mask,’’ he said brandishing a new foil mask. My wife bought it some months ago and today my son came home crying that the mask could have contributed to his losses.

‘‘Why,’’ I asked?

‘’It’s the bib,’’ he replied.

‘’It causes a hit to be registered. And this could have effected my son’s performance in the pools if he gave away more hits than he should have,’’ he added, giving me the nice new German mask with its lame bib.

‘’They (the lame tabs under the bib) contact the foil lame when my son uses it.’’

‘’Why not cover them with insulation tape?’’ I replied. That way you can use it in New Zealand where the lame bib is not used and you can use it elsewhere where it is mandatory.

‘’Oh.’’ He said, ‘’Why did they not tell my wife that when she bought the mask?’’

And that is the nub of the problem, most parents know nothing about fencing, its safety requirements and its arcane rules, and there is nothing on fencing web sites in New Zealand to help them or, what is there, is ambiguous at best – read the equipment regulations on the Fenz site as a non-fencer would and see what you make of it.

As fencers, coaches and officials we need to be aware of this knowledge gap and take time to pass on some of our (sometimes hard-earned) fencing knowledge. Perhaps it is time to produce a Dummies Guide to Fencing in New Zealand?

There is a good side to this story. Since it happened the Australians have decided to introduce the foil mask with insulated bid from January next year and no doubt Fenz will follow suit, so one lucky Kiwi fencer will not have to buy an expensive new mask to replace their current one.


29/7/2010: THE NZ SABRE CAMP!


SEPTEMBER 11th AND 12th 2010

Organized by The Sabre Club in conjunction with coach Vik Manuge and assisted by Keith Mann and Jonathan Chan. Also attending will be Luke Robertson, (current National champion), Katherine Taylor (former Australian and NZ titleholder). The coaches and fencers have a vast experience of coaching and fencing in New Zealand and overseas.

It is the only major sabre event before the start of the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne on September 29 th.

The two-day camp, is being held at the Fencing Institute, Jack Hinton Drive, Christchurch, (see map below) and is suitable for beginner to senior. It will cover, goal-setting, tactics – with emphasis on the push-pull nature of top level sabre – and sabre fitness focusing on recovery ability, speed and strength. Plus there will be structured bouting using the latest refereeing interpretations. Each day will begin and end with a round robin competition so the coaches can analyse fencers and provide each fencer with recommendations for improvement.


Your own electric sabre gear is mandatory. Billets may be arranged for out-of-towners, please ask. Much of the information imparted during the sessions may not available in books or on the web so a notebook and pen is a useful training aid.


Saturday: 10am to 1pm. 3pm to 6pm. Free fencing afterwards for those with the energy.

Sunday: 10am to 1pm. 2pm to 5pm. Free fencing afterwards for those with the energy.

COST: $75 for the weekend or $45 per day or part thereof. Price includes morning and afternoon tea but not lunch so bring your own! We have already received advanced entries from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch – numbers limited to the first 16 to pay. No pay no entry.

Please make cheques payable to: The Sabre Club. Or, Direct credit: ANZ 011158 0152359 00 50 (include your surname and the letters ‘tc’). Entries to: Secretary:

Inquiries: Vik Manuge, 03 3666396



23/7/2010: They say the camera never lies, but mrrorsince when has Alex Chan been left-handed? One of the great pix taken by Scott Suen at the NZ and Oceania fencing champs last week.


22/7/2010; Results of the NZ Secondary Schools and NZ and Oceania U20 fencing championships.

New Zealand Secondary Schools

Mens Epee: 1, Gideon van Zyl; 2, Jurgen van Zyl; 3=, Julius Herzhoff and Jesse Knight; 5, Alexander Thomas; 6, Alex Chan; 7, Felix Boyce; 8, Simon Fisher; 9, Oliver Agnew; 10, Issac Officer; 11, Kwok-Yi Lee. Teams: 1, Wentworth College; 2, Wellington College; 3= Auckland Grammar and Upper Hutt College; 5, Burnside High School.

Mens Foil: 1, Julius Herzhoff; 2, Alex Chan; 3=, Hamish Chan and Gideon van Zyl; 5, Maxime Rolland; 6, Jurgen van Zyl; 7, Kwok-Yi Lee; 8, Oliver Agnew; 9, Felix Boyce; Michael Claydon; 11, Issac Officer; 12, Jonathon Krebs; 13, Jared Howlett; 14, Mason Baxter; 15, Simon Fisher; 16, Alexander Thomas; 17, Louis Ritchie; 18, Jonathon Wanty; 19, Jesse Knight; 20, Lucian Nightingale; 21, Joon Hong; 22, Benjamin Krebs; 23, Tim Jones; 24, Andrew Curtis-Black; 25, Michael Parr; 26, Neeraj Patel; 27, Henry Ellis; 28, David Smith; 29, Jack Chen. Teams: 1 Auckland Grammar. 2 Christs College. 3= Upper Hutt College and Wellington College. 5 Otago Boys High School. 6 Burnside High School. 7 Christchurch Boys High School 1. 8 Christchurch Boys High School 2.

Mixed Sabre: 1, Alex Chan; 2, Jack Chen; 3= Maxime Rolland and Vincent Spaabaek; 5 and top woman, Hannah Ramsay; 6, Michael Parr; 7, Alexander Thomas; 8, Simon Fisher; 9, Stephanie Alexander; 10, Katie Boyle; 11, Melissa Burgess; 12 Kwok-Yi Lee; 13, Rachel Mercer; 14, David Smith. Teams: 1 Auckland Grammar. 2 Upper Hutt College.

Women’s Epee: 1, Jazmin Hopper; 2, Wai-Ling Chan; 3= Stephanie Alexander and Alex Quigley; 5, Katie Boyle; 6, Hannah MacKenzie; 7, Ming-Yi Lee; 8, Hannah Ramsay: 9, Melissa Burgess; 10, Dindi Chan; 11, Fiona Seal; 12, Rachel Mercer.

Women’s Foil: Wai-Ling Chan; 2, Ming-Yi Lee; 3= Stephanie Alexander and Jazmin Hopper; 5, Grace Christie; 6, Katie Boyle; 7, Rosa Brooke; 8, Stephanie Wylie; 9, Emma Howlett; 10, Rachel Mercer; 11, Melissa Burgess; 12, Natalie Shackleton. Teams: 1 Upper Hutt College. 2 Rangi Ruru. 3 Christchurch Girls High School.


Oceania and NZ U20 Championships.

Men’s Epee: 1, Alex Chan, New Zealand; 2, Cosmin Mihailescu, Australia; 3= Herve Perraud, New Caledonia, and Gideon van Zyl, New Zealand. 5, Quentin Touyet, New Caledonia; 6, William Bishop, New Zealand; 7, Alex Hunter, Australia; 8, Arthur Letourneulx, New Caledonia; 9 Daniel Kahu, New Zealand; 10, Nick Davies, Australia; 11, Julius Herzhoff, New Zealand; 12, Brendan Hair, New Zealand; 13, Finn Butler, New Zealand; 14, Reagan Clarke, Australia; 15, Felix Boyce, New Zealand; 16, Jesse Knight, New Zealand; 17, Issac Officer, New Zealand; 18, Robert Snell, Australia; 19, Patrick Daley, Australia; 20 Jurgen van Zyl, New Zealand; 21, Oliver Agnew, New Zealand; 22, Alexander Thomas, New Zealand; 23, Simon Fisher, New Zealand; 24, Lucian Nightingale, New Zealand. Teams: 1 Australia. 2 New Zealand. 3 New Caledonia.

Men's Foil: 1, Mooney Grand Sam, Australia; 2, Robert Snell, Australia; 3= Hamish Chan and Gideon van Zyl, both New Zealand; 5, T C Reynolds, Australia; 6, Adrian Viegas, New Zealand; 7, Patrick Daley, Australia; 8, Felix Boyce; 9, Chris Lear; 10, Julius Herzhoff; 11, Fin Butler; 12, Oliver Agnew; 13, Daniel Kahu; 14, Matthew Hill; 15, Issac Officer; 16, Spencer Smith; 17, Alex Chan; 18, Ben Wilkins; 19, Jared Howlett; 29, Maxime Rowlland; 21, Simon Fisher; 22, Jurgens van Zyl; 23, Jonathon Wanty; 24, Michael Claydon; 25, Jonathan Krebs; 26, Michael Parr; 27 Benjamin Krebs; 28, Lucian Nightingale; 29, Alexander Thomas; 30, Jonathan Brill; 31, David Smith (all New Zealand). Teams: 1 Australia. 2 New Zealand.

Men’s Sabre: 1 Alex Chan, New Zealand; 2 Eoin Queen, New Zealand; 3= Jack Chen, New Zealand, and Nick Davies, Australia; 5, Vincent Spaabaek, New Zealand; 5, Alexander Thomas, New Zealand; 7, David Smith, New Zealand; 8, Simon Fisher, New Zealand; 9, Michael Parr, New Zealand.

Women’s Epee: 1, Ioana Mihailescu, Australia; 2, Clarisse Gally, New Caledonia; 3= Carla Campbell, New Zealand, and Francoise Herren, Switzerland; 5, Anna Soboleva, Russia; 6, Amy Reynolds, Australia; 7, Hannah Ramsay, New Zealand; 8, Jazmin Hopper, New Zealand; 9, Katie Boyle, New Zealand; 10, Stephanie Alexander, New Zealand; 11, Melissa Burgess, New Zealand; 12, Katie Boyer, New Zealand; 13, Alex Quigley, New Zealand; 14, Hannah MacKenzie, New Zealand, 15, Rebecca Jamison, New Zealand. Teams: 1  Nouvellestralie. 2 New Zealand.

Women’s Foil: (All New Zealand) 1, Sally McCance; 2, Wai-Ling Chan; 3= Stephanie Alexander and Ming-Yi Lee; 5, Katie Boyle; 6, Melissa Burgess; 7, Grace Christie; 8, Rachel Mercer; 9, Stephanie Wylie; 10, Olive Butler; 11, Kate Boyer; 12, Emma Howlett.

Women’s Sabre: (All New Zealand) 1, Hannah Ramsay; 2, Carla Campbell; 3= Stephanie Alexander and Sasha Green; 5, Katie Boyle; 6, Rachel Mercer; 7, Melissa Burgess.



21/7/2010: Only for you; Louise Tucker those unpaid volunteers work only for YOU! So be nice to them next time you meet them at a fencing comp.


20/7/2010: Still no results so will harass the organiser again, but here are some photos from the Oceania U20s taken by former fencer now physio, Scott Suen


19/7/2010: New Zealand Secondary Schools and New Zealand and Oceania U20s results and pix will be along soon, in the meantime have a look at Oceania Fencing Confederation


12/7/2010: Check out the Australian teams for the Commonwealth Fencing Championships



9/7/2010: Not something you'd see on a site devoted to fencing, but the story is so unusual and heartwarming you have to read it.. Breasts on a Pink Coffin?titone

Pam Hermansen wants to go out in style. The 48-year-old Christchurch woman has only months to live and has planned her funeral down to the last detail - her pink coffin is decorated with paintings of breasts - for Pam will die from breast cancer.

Both Pam and her sister Trish suffer from breast cancer, but the simple fact is that while Pam will die, her sister is in remission and will live. It is this message of hope and encouraging women to have regular check-ups that the sisters want to publicise.

Pam’s coffin was made by a friend and decorated by New Brighton artist Lyn Taylor.

More about Pam at the Nation's Top Newspaper: The Press


8/7/2010: Interesting stats from the recent Aussie U15 and U17 champs. Kiwi kids won nine individual and eight team medals!! More at: Full results





27/6/2010: They are out!

The teams for the Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne later this year are out: cfc teams The veterans are here: Vets.

Your thoughts welcomed or you can post them on the Fenz site.

My immediate feelings are why no women's sabre team - but them I am biased, though I know that one of the three selectors did not know that Fenz had promised to select teams in ALL three weapons! The question is, did they select from only those nominated or, did they go and invite suitable fencers that did not nominate to scramble aboard in an effort to field full teams?


24/6/2010: Wot's this?? wot

It delighted many fencers and officials at the MidSouth Champs and may be, with a bit of arm-twisting, available at the Secondary Schools and Oceanics in ChCh next month. Now here is an action shot from the champs..flunge

Further pix at: Scott's pix


22/6/2010: Commonwealth Fencing Championships - New Zealand team members are being informed as you read this. We await Fenz's release of the team to the wider fencing community soon - watch this space!!


19/6/2010: Results of the MidSouth Fencing Championships held at the Fencing Institute, Christchurch the weekend of 19/20th June.


1. Andreas Sesun, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

2. Alex Chan, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

3= Brett Davis, University of Canterbury Fencing Club, and Julius Herzhoff, Fencing Institute.

5. Anna Sobeleva, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

6. Hannah Ramsay, United Fencing Club.

7. Tony Cuncannon, Wellington.

8. Alex Quigley, Fencing Institute.

9. Eoin Queen, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

10. Hannah MacKenzie, United Fencing Club.

11. Kate Bayer, St Andrews.

12. Mark Nancollis, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

13. Rachel Hannover O'Connor, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

14. Josh Gibson, Canterbury University Fencing Club.

15. Fiona Seal, Canterbury University Fencing Club.

16. Jonathon Seal, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.



1. Hamish Clarke, Fencing Institute.

2. Chris Bell, Fencing Institute,

3= Andrew Kell, Auckland, Andreas Sesun, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

5 Ben Wilkings, Fencing Institute.

6. Julius Herzhoff, Fencing Institute.

7. Sally McCance, Fencing Institute.

8. Fiona McDonald, Dunedin.

9. Rachel Rowlands, Fencing Institute.

10. Sam Deavoll, Christchurch.

11. Jonathan Davies, Christchurch.

12. Finian Cresswell, United Fencing Club.

13. Neeraj Patel, United Fencing Club.

14. Rosa Brook, Christchurch.

15. Scott Suen, Christchurch.

16. Hannah McKenzie, United Fencing Club.



1. Luke Robertson, Sabre Club.

2. Alex Chan, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

3= Carla Campbell, Sabre Club and Eoin Queen, University of Canterbury Fencing Club.

5. Hannah Ramsay, United Fencing Club.

6. Gwen Smart, Sabre Club.

7. Michael Chen, Sabre Club.

8. Robbie Macdonald, Sabre Club.



18/6/2010: Move over Aussies! Forty-five Kiwis are coming to the U15 and U17's in Sydney next month - 29 fencers and the rest support crew of one sort or another.

The turn-out is larger than that at last year's event in Brisbane and is a direct result of Fencing New Zealand's decision last year to encourage participation in an effort to build numbers.

Fenz has committed to sending full teams in all three weapons to this year's Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne - so mates across the pond, look out for another invasion!

Women’s top quality used fencing gear for sale.

  1. Uhlmann right-hand size 38 kevlar 800N uniform includes size two plastron. $290.
  2. Foil lame size 38, $50.
  3. Standard (non-FIE) foil $50.
  4. Four single-pin foil bodywires $20 each - near new.

So there you are some fencing gear at bargain prices – check Uhlmann, Negrini or other suppliers’ sites, but be quick as the last lot advertised went quick! E-mail me and I will send the contact details.


13/6/2010. Sorry Luke, you will have to supply the cupcakes tomorrow, however you did get Sandy's name correct - yes, Kiwi foilist Sandy Paterson takes a nap on a wall overlooking the ancient city of Toledo. Famed for it hand-forged sword blades, now alas made elsewhere, but they still have their fencing club - see the pix at the top of the Learn to Fence page on this site.

Read more about why you should visit Toledo If you are wondering why Cooky has wrapped-up so much - it was cold!


11/6/2010: ............................. cfc


Damned if you do and damned if you don’t, could become the catch-cry for Fenz’s three selectors for this year’s Commonwealth Fencing Championships in Melbourne, especially after Fenz has said it will send full teams in all weapons, that’s a maximum of five fencers per weapon for the individual events and four in a team.

Selection in most sports is often fraught with controversy as is the funding of teams. Take for example the case of the All Blacks where you have nearly four million amateur selectors (this figure recognises that some in New Zealand do not support Rugby Union!) commenting and endlessly blethering on about whom they would have selected and why instead of someone else. This is not a bad thing for it shows that many people feel they have a stake in Rugby Union and that commitment generates income for the sport.

Will it be the same for fencing? Whatever the Selectors do there will be discussion and comment. This too will be good for Fencing as will full teams of Kiwi fencers out to do their best - pour encourager les autres!


10/6/2010: Sorry AndyPandy, but someone managed to answer one of the open questions correctly. Andy, another one not you, named the epeeist who trains in foil (many tried but got it wrong)!

It is former Christchurch fencer Chris Nokes now living in Hamilton. Seems there are not many epeeists in the riverside city so the poor fellow has to make do with foilists. However Chris did say that another former Christchurch and University of Canterbury Fencing Club epeeist, Al McBride, turns up from time to time. Now do I have some photos of him??? Anyway here is the bathroom raider...spiderman in all his glory.


10/6/2010: Full results of NI champs are here for download:

No takers for the signed pix of AndyPandy!!!???


9/6/2010: You read it here first.... gossip from the North Island Fencing Champs. Who is the top epeeist who trains by fencing foil? Who was the fencer that turned up at airport security with a pocket knife in their carry-on baggage?

As usual, answers on a single A4 page, first correct answer wins a signed photograph of Andrew Kell climbing in through the bathroom window!

Talking of Andrew Kell, he recently bought some used fencing gear in Christchurch, including a Fuchsia coloured fencing rollbag. The smaller fencing bits'n'bobs were delivered to him at NI Champs by kind ChCh fencers, but the bag still needs to be delivered. Anyone going to Auckland in the next few weeks who could take it?? E-mail me and I'll flick it on to AndyPandy.


8/6/2010: Results of the 2010 North Island Fencing Championships held in the gymnasium at Auckland Grammar School Queens Birthday weekend.

Men’s Sabre

1. Luke Roberston, Christchurch.

2. Alex Chan, Christchurch.

3= Luke Crozier, Wellington.

3= Michael Mercer, Wellington.

5. Eoin Queen, Christchurch.

6. Peter Kim, Wellington.

7. Maxime, Rolland, Auckland.

8. Garth Shillito, Auckland,

9. Kwok-Yi Lee, Auckland.

10. Jonathan Hewlett, Auckland.

11. Bryan Clark, Wellington.

12. Rex Heffernen, Auckland.

13. Terry Coleman, Wellington.


Women’s Sabre:

1. Katherine Taylor, Auckland.

2. Monique Coleman, Auckland.

3= Carla Campbell, Christchurch.

3= Sasha Green, Auckland.

5. Katie Logan, Auckland.

6. Hannah Ramsay, Christchurch.

7. Ming-Yi Lee, Auckland.


Women’s Foil:

1. Judit Fliszar, Auckland.

2.Monique Coleman, Auckland.

3= Jazmin Hopper, Auckland.

3= Sally McCance, Christchurch.

5. Vicky Fan, Auckland.

6. Rachel Rowlands, Christchurch.

7. Fiona MacDonald, Dunedin.

8. Susan Grant-Taylor, Wellington.

9. Ming-Yi Lee, Auckland.

10. Hannah Tang, Auckland.

11. Katherine Taylor, Auckland.

12. Grace Christie, Auckland.

13. Anna McKinnon, Wellington.

14. Alice Boyd, Auckland.

15. Stephany Wyllie, Auckland.

16. Amanda Cundry, Wellington.


Men’s Epee:

1.Paul Hentschel, Wellington.

2. Kyle MacDonald, Auckland.

3= Chris Nokes, Auckland.

3= Graham Payne, Auckland.

5. Andreas Sesun, Christchurch.

6. Gideon van Zyle, Auckland.

7. Alex Chan, Christchurch.

8. William Bishop, Wellington.

9. Daniel Kahu, Wellington.

10. Tony Culliford, Wellington.

11. Arthur Gatland, Auckland.

12. Dmitry Trashkov, Christchurch.

13. Felix Boyce, Wellington.

14. Eoin Queen, Christchurch.

15. Stefan Hermans, Auckland

16. Jurgen van Zyl, Auckland.

17. Rory Murray, Auckland.

18. Brett Ammundsen, Auckland.

19. Brendan Hair, Wellington.

20. Bevan Dobbs, Auckland.

21. Oliver Agnew, Auckland.

22. Bryan Clark, Wellington.

23. Tony Cuncannon, Wellington.

24. Rex Heffernen, Auckland.

25. Kwok-Yi Lee, Auckland.

(Men's foil and women's epee to come.)



3/6/2010: It seems there is a good market for second-hand fencing gear at the right price. Kerryn has sold all her gear advertised a few days ago except, the shoes, any takers?? The other interesting thing is the wide market, so to speak, with inquiries coming from across the pond and further afield. The lucky buyers are from Auckland and Adelaide!

31/5/2010: Here's a nice poster..poster


28/5/2010: FOR SALE.

Cheap way to score some FIE quality gear! (Left-handed woman's). E-mail me below for contact details. Seller is ChCh based.

Epee LH Med Grip Maraging Blade

2 Foils Complete 2 pin LH Maraging Blue Blades

2 Foil Blades Maraging

3 Foil 2 Pin Wires

A sabre

Roll bag – fushia in colour

Adidas Jacket 800 N L Handed Size 84 (talle)(name on back)

Uhlman 800 N Pants Size 84 NZ Fern on Leg

Uhlman Plastron (RH)  Size Medium

LH Glove – Mainland Fencing Size 7

Red Lame LH Size 42

Red Mask 1600N Size Medium

Chest Protector Size Small

Adidas Fencing Shoes US Size 9

Test Box

Weight & Guages



27/5/2010: Why is this person lying down? Who is he? What is his interest in the city in the background? Finally, what was the former Roman city famed for? As usual, first with the correct reply gets the cupcake.ttoo

Well done Gio for your quick response to the King Dick conundrum. Do you really want a signed photo??




By Gemma Noon

The 2010 ALG Challenge - Australia's biggest fencing tournament - has been a resounding success for the Australian fencing community, according to Australian Fencing's Major Events Director Bill Ronald at the closeof the event on Sunday.

"The tournament has been a success, especially for the athletes as they work towards improving their seedings on the pathway to London (Olympics in 2012). It shows how the Sydney fencing community can come together to build an outstanding event and builds on the legacy of the Sydney Olympics," Ronald said.

He says the organisers have managed to create an athlete-friendly, world class event which continues to be popular with fencers from around the world.

"Many athletes return time after time because they enjoy the tournament so much; we pride ourselves on making it an athlete's event," Ronald said.

American Weston Kelsey beat Japan's Keisuke Sakamoto to win the men's event while Germany's Imke Duplitzer beat Dutchwoman Sonja Tol to take home the gold medal in the women's event.

No Australian fencers reached the medal matches, however dual Olympian Evelyn Halls reached the top eight in the women's competition, while James Lewis reached the top 16 in the men's.

Having a World Tour event in Australia also provides valuable experience to Australia's younger athletes such as Diana Sher, Nick Davies and James Lewis. Sher, a promising junior, came up against Beijing 2008 gold medallist Britta Heidemann in a Direct Elmination match on Sunday. Heidemann eventually finished with the bronze medal after a defeat against Duplitzer in their semifinal.

"The probability of drawing someone (Heidemann) like that is rare," Australian High Performance Manager Peter Osvarth said.

"The event brings world class fencers to Australia which our fencers wouldn't otherwise face. It raises the profile of the sport for both athletes and spectators and brings us to the attention of the world fencing community," he continued.

The Challenge is also a valuable performance indicator for Australia's more seasoned fencers.

"It gives our juniors an idea of the gap between what they do and what they aspire to do; it gives our previous Olympians a chance to come out and see where they currently stand," Osvarth said.

(Please exchange the word Australia with New Zealand to see the benefit for Kiwi fencers.)


23/5/2010: Day Two of the 2010 ALG Challenge kicked off on this morning with the Direct Elimination round for the women's event.

Auckland fencer Nancy LIU before he bout against SOZANSKA Monika (GER): "I don't know her. It will surely be a very mental game because she has a very high ranking. I'll have to work extra hard. I will try to visualize winning to prepare for this bout and not to make the same mistakes."

For New Zealander Jennifer Jackson, it was a bittersweet victory knocking out fellow Kiwi Katherine Taylor. "It's a shame it had to be a Kiwi," she said. ""It always would be nicer to come into the event ranked higher, yesterday was not that great but what can you do, you have to work with the draw you get."

Ash Hampers Irish Epeeist's Dash to Challenge Australia By Andrew Pickering

Ahead of the ALG Challenge Australia 2010, Andrew Fenwick is aiming
to repeat his top 16 finish from this event last year but,
regardless of results, is just happy to have made it to Sydney.

The Irishman's flight looked set to be cancelled after volcano
Eyjafjallajokull shut down all the airports in his homeland but
hours before he was due to leave on Wednesday, the ban was lifted.

It's not the first time his plans have been wrecked by the Icelandic
volcano either - his flight home from the World Cup meet in Paris
this year was cancelled.

But now that he's made it here the 23-year-old is trying to put his
travel problems behind him and instead look ahead to the weekend's
competition in Australia.

"It's been a bit of a disappointing start to the season but I got a
top 16 in Iran [in a World Cup meeting] and I'm confident I can do
the same here," he said.

Check out the results of ashen Andrew and our eight Kiwi epeeists at:CHALLENGE!



22/5/2010: Starts today, Challenge Australia men's and women's world cup epee comp in Sydney:

The Tyranny of Distance.

International rankings are at stake for some of our top fencers this weekend when they take to the piste in the Challenge Australia men’s and women’s world cup epee competition in Sydney. Only three of the eight New Zealanders competing have international rankings, Katherine Taylor of Auckland, William Bishop of Wellington and Adrian Saw of Christchurch.

The three along with Christchurch epeeists Carla Campbell and Andreas Sesun, Aucklanders Kyle MacDonald, Nancy Liu and Melbourne based Jenny Jackson, who are unranked, will go up against some of the best fencers in the world including the current women’s world number one and Olympic champion, Britta Heidemann, of Germany, and Sonja Tol, of the Netherlands, who is ranked 9 th in the world.

Normally Kiwi fencers have to travel to Europe or Asia to compete in competitions recognised by the International Fencing Federation (FIE) and gain world ranking points, but the Challenge Australia, which started in 1994 to build up the expertise to run the fencing at the 2000 Olympics, is a quick, cheap flight over the pond for them.

This year’s Challenge has attracted 121 fencers from 18 countries a far cry from the record 288 entries of 2003, but still a formidable turn out for fencers used to the smaller fields of competitions in Australia and New Zealand, but a great preparation for the Commonwealth Fencing Championships to be held in Melbourne this September. Below, previous medalists...




21/5/2010: Ask about King Dick and most Kiwis will quickly respond with Richard Seddon, New Zealand's longest serving Prime Minister, but there is another King Dick, a motorcycle made in Abingdon, England, and here is a prime example being fettled by Dunedin motorcyclist Bill Veitch. Bigbill

First to respond with the model and year will receive a signed 8x10 photo for displaying on their wall. Read more about Bill at: McIver and Veitch Ltd.


20/5/2010: This weekend eight Kiwi will take on the best in the world at a top international fencing tournament in Sydney.

The Challenge Australia epee event, one of only 12 men’s and women’s World Cup events world-wide, has attracted 121 competitors from 18 countries among them the winner of the women’s epee event at the Beijing Olympics, Britta Heidemann, of Germany.

Three of the Kiwi epeeists are from Auckland; Nancy Liu, Kyle MacDonald and Katherine Taylor. Three are from Christchurch; Carla Campbell, Adrian Saw and Andreas Sesun, and one from Wellington, William Bishop, and one, Jenny Jackson, lives in Melbourne, Australia.

Epee is the modern development of the old duelling rapier. When Fencing was selected for the first Olympic Games way back in 1896 epee fencing bouts were fought for one hit which replicated, as much as possible, what would have happened in a real duel, but now epeeists fight for five points in the preliminary bouts and 15 hits in the direct elimination rounds with the whole body, head to toe, as target.

You can follow the duels of our Kiwi fencers at: Challenge



19/5/2010: CHALLENGE AUSTRALIA is this weekend in Sydney.


Over the years many Kiwi fencers have competed in this FIE sanctioned mens and womens epee event. Photos show a past champion and some of the Kiwis who have competed.


Follow the results of Carla, Katherine, Andreas, Nancy and the rest of this year's Kiwi competitors at: CHALLENGE!


16/5/2010: How many Kiwi fencers have a world ranking??? Find out for yourself, just select the weapon, input the country (New Zealand) and as they say on the telly, voilla! FIE world rankings.


15/5/2010: What's this pix got to do with fencing? Absolutely nothing. I just like motorcycles and these huge machines are sold by a Christchurch company.


If you have an interesting pix e-mail it to the address below.



13/5/2010: The fencers' nominations are in, Fenz has promised to send full teams and here is the newly designed logo.....cfclogo




10/5/2010: Pix from the Eccelston Epee.ekkyaktion

One would think the whole day consisted of fencing, but no, the fencing took just on three hours, the use of four 'pistes' helped, with the rest of the time spent eating at the Marco Polo cafe on campus......



and at Winnie Bagoes later that evening, when a very contrite Martin Brill turned up to return a book about fly-fishing which he had borrowed from Eckky 15 years earlier!!....


Least you think all Uni students are eaters and such-like here is a shot of some in action under the eyes of 'Bod'.....




Results of the annual Eccleston One Hit Epee competition run by the University of Canterbury Fencing Club today in the Ballroom at the Students Association Building on Ilam Road, Christchurch:

1 Andreas Susun; 2 Alex Chan; 3 Brett Davis; 4 Dmitry Trashkov; 5 Anna Sobeleva (top female fencer); Tom Kent (top left-hander); 7 Roger Welsh; 8 Robert Blackburne; 9 Rachel Hanover-O’connor (club Secretary); 10 Josh Gibson (club Treasurer); 11 Yi Zeng; 12= Dhamendra Unka, John Seal and Mark Nancollis (most double hits); 13 Max Carter-Smith; 14 Rachel van Heugten (club President) and Fiona Seal (youngest fencer); 15 Hannah Ramsay; 16 Vik Manuge (oldest fencer); 17 Fraser Gemmell.

A double hit is where both fencers hit each other at the same time and both fencers loose a point. Just as in a real duel both would have been wounded!

The event attracted 20 fencers, three up on last year. Guests of honour were former Kiwi champions David and Aileen Eccleston, of Nelson, after whom the competition is named. The pair presented five electric epees to the winners plus sundry other prizes. Among the spectators were former UCFC fencers Rangi de Abaffy and Geoff Low.

(pix to come)


6/5/2010: Great news for Wellington fencing. Peter Kell, one of the famous triumvirate of former Christchurch fencers - the Kell brothers - is moving back to Wellington later this year. Pete has been working and coaching in London. The youngest brother, Andrew, is now in Auckland and has taken up Tai Chi. Anybody recall the name of the third brother??? Answers on a single page please. First to answer correctly will receive a pix of Andrew Kell climbing through the bathroom window!!



This is a fun event held in recognition of Olga's seventy years of involvement in fencing.

Forty-three fencers took part in mixed teams. Teams included a male and a female, fencers from different clubs and of varying abilities. There were three divisions. Open, under 13year beginners and a combined group of U13 year experienced fencers and over 13 yr beginners.

Olga traditionally donates three electric foils and Daniel Chan donated three bodywires as spot prizes so six lucky fencers received these and will hopefully put them to good use in the future.

3/5/2010: Fencing gear for sale!

Right-handed, Women' near new Uhlmann 800N kevlar jacket, trou and plastron, size 38, $290. Women' Uhlmann foil lame same size $50. Four foil bodywires and one epee bodywire, $20 each. Also one FIE maraging right-handed epee, $150.

A great buy for someone moving up the equipment scale as the clothing is less than a third the cost of buying it new - a saving of around $700! Have a look at the new prices: Mainland Fencing then contact me via e-mail (below) quickly and I'll flick you some phone-numbers.


2/5/2010: A Canadian fencer has asked do Kiwi fencers do a haka before team events? The answer is no, but perhaps Kiwi fencers should have a think about performing something like this: Poi E


31/4/2010: Happy birthday Keith!

Kiwi fencing legend Keith Mann celebrates his 78th birthday today!


Keith has been President of Fenz twice and represented New Zealand at both Empire Games and Commonwealth Fencing Championships - in his last commonwealth outing in 2002 he won two gold medals in the veterans events! Keith, who started his fencing in England as a schoolboy, has just stepped down as President of Fencing MidSouth. He was made a Life Member of MidSouth earlier this year. A long-time coach, a well as administrator, he still teaches our ancient art and modern sport at United Fencing Club. You can send your congratulations and exhortations to: He is known to favour a good cigar and a cold lager.


30/4/2010: Don't forget tomorrow's Olga Jeykll foil teams event at Linwwod College Saturday 8.30am to 4.00pm.

8:30 am Registration Open electric foil mixed teams 8:50 am Roll Call

11.00am Registration for visual foil.[fencers who started fencing in 2010] 11.15 roll call

11.00am Registration for Primary school electric foil.

(Olga Jekyll traditionally donates electric foils as spot prizes[drawn at approximately 3.30pm] You must be present to receive the foil. Another number/name will be drawn if the person is not present.)



28/4/2010: We want action pix you cry, so's here's one from the recent University Games. The other gos from that event is that Russian fencer Anna Soboleva was elected President of the New Zealand University's Fencing Association.uniaction


27/4/2010: Thanks for your responses. So far LIES (see below) is in the lead with SOS a very long way behind. As two respondents noted, LIES is also very strong in overseas fencing, particularly World Cup events, with its exponents using languages not understood by the referee. Perhaps the FIE will amend its use of in-mask communication devices to curtail the use of LIES, however, as one respondent suggested, the antics of those using LIES is like the actions of football coaches and add a certain something to the sport for the spectators.


26/4/2010: Here’s another pix from the NZ U15 and U17 champs in Wellington. It shows former fencer Brian Pomeroy and Fencing New Zealand Patron, Richard Peterson. pom

Pom, as he is known, terrified sabreurs of the day with a hugely quick quinte parry riposte and instilled fear into the hearts of university fencers with his servings of copious quantities of Lamb’s Navy Rum! While Richard still strikes fear into the Capital’s fencers by turning up to fence from time to time.

There is a rumour that Richard and Keith Mann, of Christchurch, are thinking about entering the Commonwealth Veterans Fencing Championships being held in Melbourne in September.

Now back to the future, an interesting event in Wellington was the attempt by officials to suppress that insidious habit of Secret Observational Signalling. SOS is where two coaches, whose fencers are competing on the piste, position themselves at one end of the piste to observe their charges, then one complains to the referee that the other, who is usually sitting eating an orange, is secretly signalling to her or his pupil. The referee then bans the offending coach to a position behind his or her pupil for committing SOS. Quite how the complaining coach and referee recognise SOS has been kept secret in an effort to aid its suppression.

Another exciting coaching advance witnessed in Wellington was Loud Intrusive Exhortations, or LIES as it is universally known. This is where a coach shrieks out instructions to their fencer fighting on the piste much to the amusement of other fencers and spectators. In Wellington this sad but amusing spectacle was not penalised for some secret reason but allowed to reverberate around the fencing hall. However LIES, also known as off-piste coaching, is frowned upon in international fencing and its exponents can be black carded and expelled from the fencing hall unlike those conducting Secret Observational Signalling. Another interesting observation was that SOS seemed to be exclusively practised by South Island coaches and LIES by North Island coaches.

The question is, dear reader, is SOS more interesting for spectators than LIES’?


24/4/2010: Here's another from the U15 and U17s held in Wellington recently....its that other weapon the kids play with...wgttoo


PS. Don't forget to get your entry in for the Eccleston Epee, you can pay on the day, but need to let Titch know you are coming. Lets see if it can attract more epeeists than last year's 17 or so.

The other bit of gossip is that a former foilist and well-known ChCh fizzio is to make a comeback attempt at next weekend's Olga Jeykll foil event!

Plus the turnout at this morning's MidSouth refereeing course was more than double than the last one - perhaps Kiwi fencers are beginning to relise that there will never, ever, be a high-level foil or sabre competition held in New Zealand, or Australia for that matter, until we improve the quality and experience of our referees! In fact, one of the best ways to improve your fencing is to improve your refereeing skills.


23/4/2010: Oops, just been told off - ''why did you post a photograph of the AFF comp in Melbourne instead of one from the NZu15 and u17s in Wellington. I saw you there with a camera so why no photographs?''

No excuse, so here is a pix from that event and I'll post more over the weekend! Question: which top Wellington fencer's office can you see here..wgtone

mtc (more to come)

23/4/2010: Thanks for your amazing interest in M. Bernet and thanks to Chris for checking the Wellington street for clues. Sadly, no new info has come to hand, but we still hope. Now, for something completely different, spot the Kiwis at last weekend's AFF1 competition...affwun




Great article by Greg Ford in yesterday's Sunday Star Times on where the tax-payers dollars spent on New Zealand sport go. Well worth a read especially for the differing attitudes to requests for information by many top-ranked sports. Read it here: Sunday Star Times


18/4/2010: Thanks to those that replied about M. Bernet even though they were all in the negative, somebody somewhere must know something so we will keep hoping.

For more up-t0-date gos on fencing have a look here AustFencingEvents It has the results of a host of Kiwi Fencers trying to improve their chances of selection for the Commonwealth Fencing Champs and other top level events. Well done the Old Fellas!! in the men's and women's vets events.



15/4/2010: Your help is needed.

This article appeared in the the New Zealand Truth of November 22, 1926. Does anyone know anything about the people named? Nicki, of Auckland, would dearly love to know more about her Great Grandfather's life here in New Zealand or France.



12/4/2010: An Invitation to a good time.....



The University of Canterbury Fencing Club invites you to “The One-Hit Eccleston Epee Competition 2010”! This competition is open to all fencers of epee and this year prizes include two electric epees donated by Dave and Eileen Eccleston.

When: Saturday 8 th May Start time 10:45am

Enter on the day between 10:00-10:40am or email with your details.

Where: This year the Eccleston Epee will be held in the University of Canterbury Students’ Association building, 90 Ilam Road.

Entry fees: Just $10!

Gear: Must be SAFE. No force requirement. Please bring 2 epees and test them before you begin fencing. Weapons will be checked on the piste, but for you foilists or sabreurs epees and bodywires will be available for hire!

Rules: There will be a champion woman and a champion man, based on points, with the number of wins as a tie breaker.

  • Every fencer will fight every other competitor.
  • If any fencer withdraws for any reason their bouts are deemed not to have taken place and are removed from the score sheet.
  • All bouts be of one minute duration.
  • Single hit 2 points
  • Double hit 1 point
  • No hit 0 points
  • Any fencer not presenting within 1 minute of call 0 points. The opponent 2 points.
  • There will be a performance based spot prize revealed at the end of the competition.

(Fence at your own risk.)




5/4/2010: Usually a challenge posted on this website has a response within hours, not days, but sadly this time the only response was a half-hearted request from an old fencer in Malaysia. Anyway, here's the list of Kiwi fencers who fought in Singapore...


A couple are still involved with our sport, who?? Another two will be Guests of Honour at the Eccleston One Hit Epee comp in Christchurch next month being run by the University of Canterbury Fencing Club. And poor Percy, alive and kicking in the North Island, does not have to cough-up a prize.



Can you name the Kiwi fencers who competed at this event?? Percy Temple will donate a suitable prize to the first correct answer...




31/3/2010: Well-known Australian fencing master dies.

It is with great sadness that Fencing Victoria informs members that Maitre John Fethers passed away last night. John has been a foundation stone for Australian and Victorian fencing for the last 60 years, as a noteworthy international fencer in the first instance and then over many decades as a coach, developing elite athletes and coaches alike.

His contribution to fencing was enormous and his legacy remains strong in the Victorian fencing community through many fencers and coaches, and their students in turn.

Fencing Victoria extends its sincere condolences to John's family. A detailed obituary for John will be published on the Fencing Victoria website in the days to come and service for John will be arranged for Friday 16 April. Details will be circulated as they become available.

(Prof Fethers was known and respected by Kiwi fencers having been involved in training camps on this side of the Tasman in the 1960s and 1970s. Many older Kiwi fencers will remember him as an ardent competitor - former Fenz President Keith Mann certainly does, ''He was part of an amazingly strong Aussie team training in London in the early 1960s.'')


30/3/2010: Kiwi fencer Jess Beer is ranked somewhere between 12th and 13th on British Fencing's rankings of women epeeists. Yes, I know there is no such number, but that's her ranking - if you don't believe me have a look here: British Fencing

Anyway, here's a pix of Jess Jessand you might like to know that she competed in last weekend's A Grade epee event in Luxembourg coming 76th.

On a more mundane matter ChCh epeeist (see I am not one-eyed about sabre and can talk coherently about the other two weapons when there is something to talk about!) Dmitry Trashkov invites you to the opening of his exhibition of drawings based on C S Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters. The exhibition, called Ghost Heaven opens at 5.30pm on April 6 th at the Coca, 66 Gloucester Street, and closes April 25 th. There is wine for those who turn up at the opening and big welcome for those who buy a work.


29/3/2010: Kiwi Youngsters Put Aussie Fencers To The Sword!

The measure of a true Kiwi sports person is not whether they are a World champion, nice but not necessary, same with the Olympics, yes you have to be on top of your game to a win an Olympic medal, but still it does not stir the New Zealand audience into that visceral enjoyment of winning.

What does? Beating Australians! Any victory over our brothers across the pond seems to bring to the boil that sense of intense satisfaction you see when a younger sibling bests an older one. Which is exactly what two Christchurch fencers did last weekend in Sydney – they put the Aussies to the sword!

The pair, Alex Chan and Hannah Ramsay, were among eight Kiwi fencers taking part in the junior sabre training camp run by the Oceanic Fencing Confederation under the direction of New South Wales Fencing’s newly imported Italian Fencing Master, Antonio Signorello, in Sydney.

Being good competitive types they entered the New South Wales Fencing Association’s Paul Rizzuto Open Sabre competition in the Sydney suburb of Marrickville, which just happened to be held last Sunday towards the end of the camp.

Chan won the men’s event and Ramsay, the youngest fencer at the camp, was third in the women’s event. Full results, including the remaining six Kiwis at:

The sad thing is, that some of the Aussie youngsters who competed and attended the camp will be competing in the World Junior and Cadet champs in Baku, but not our Kiwi kids. You can keep an eye on the champs here: Baku

29/3/2010: Pssst. Wanna know what happened to Fenz Treasurer Mark Booth?? Well he has been offered a job in Canberra, sad for us, but good for the Aussies. Booth, who does a bit of sabre coaching on the side in the Kiwi Capital, Wellington, will join Christchurch epeeist Andrew Thomson in the Australian Capital. Andy, or Bicen as he likes to be known, has just finished his PhD in photovoltaics and scored a three-year contract for further research. Now here's Mark...byemarksnapped during a Sabre Camp in Christchurch last year. Bye Mark! He leaves at the end of next month.


28/3/2010: The new Leaders of Fencing New Zealand are:

President: Ken Claridge, Wellington.

Secretary: Fiona McDonald, Dunedin.

Treasurer: no nominations so no one elected

Auditor: to be appointed

Selectors: Mark Rance (Christchurch), Gareth Foley (Dunedin)and Wayne Cui (Wellington).



The Sabre Sessions will resume on April 21 at 6.30pm at the Fencing Institute the format remains the same as last year. Group lesson first followed by controlled (and uncontrolled!) electric fencing. (Electric gear is available for hire at $5 for the session.)

Cost is $150 per term, plus a one-off affiliation fee to Fencing MidSouth and Fencing New Zealand of $30. The affiliation fee will be waived if you have paid it at another club. This fee includes use of mask, sabre, glove, plastron and jacket.

Owing to the delay in starting there will be three ten week terms this year in line with school terms.

As usual the first visit is free for newbies so bring along a friend or two or three.


23/3/2010: Action or, in this case inaction, from the weekend's Oceania Fencing Confederation epee camp at the new State Fencing Centre in Melbourne. Sixteen young fencers from Australia and New Zealand attended the camp and the question is dear reader are these Kiwis or Australians or a mixture of both. First correct answer wins a special prize from Maitre Vlad Sher.




18/3/2010: Came across this little guy on the net, wonder who drew him??

And he's a left-hander.....littlesabreguy


15/3/2010: Twenty-two young Kiwi fencers embark on the trip of a lifetime later this month when they head off to all expenses paid training camps in Australia. Organised by the Oceania Fencing Confederation, the training camps in foil, epee and sabre, aim to develop the sport’s up and coming talent in New Zealand and across the ditch in Australia.

Those attending the camps are; Foilists;.Hamish Chan, Chris Lear, Ming-Yi Lee, Hannah Tang and Jazmin Hopper, all Auckland. Ben Wilkins and Sally McCance, Christchurch and Daniel Kahu, Wellington.

Epeeists; William Bishop, Brendan Hair, Wellington, Gideon van Zyl, Felix Mann and Jazmin Hopper, Auckland. Carla Campbell, Christchurch.

Sabreurs; Alex Chan, Eoin Queen and Hannah Ramsay, Christchurch. Jono Hewlett, Max Rolland, Sasha Green and Stepanie Simpkin, Auckland. Katie Logan, Wellington.

The epee and foil camps will be held in the spanking new Victorian State Fencing Centre in Melbourne on 20 and 21 March (epee) and foil 27 and 28 March, with the sabre camp in Sydney on 27 and 28 March.

Victorians have been asking themselves if Noah was a fencer, after the brand-new State Fencing Centre was flooded by the wild weather which deluged Melbourne earlier this month. Read more about the camps and weather at: Australian Fencing Federation.


14/3/2010: Some of you have asked for more pix of Andrew Kell and his prediliction for strange motor cars. Well, sorry there are no more. However, there is this picture of Andypandy doing an imitation of a motor car in the dark just off Madrid's Grand Via after he had been visiting a fencing club situated on that famous street. Here's more about Grand Via and here's Andy...




12/3/2010: OOf, two responses from Kiwi graphic designers so look out over the pond. While we're there have a look at this pix:whothree


11/3/2010: Calling all Kiwi graphic designers, have a look at this. Anything our cousins across the pond can do Kiwis can do even better - 'cept the cricket. Send your ideas to Bill direct.

The Great Logo Competition of 2010

Not since the Great Logo Competition of 2007 has such an opportunity been available
to the graphic designers of Australian Fencing!

A fencing competition of a different kind!
Your chance to be famous in fencing circles throughout the Commonwealth!

The great
Commonwealth Fencing Championships
Commonwealth Veterans Fencing Championships
29 September – 5 October 2010
Logo Competition

Uses & applications:
• “t” shirt for merchandise sales and volunteers uniforms
• Web site
• Stationery, letterheads, tickets etc.
• Participation Certificates
• Banners & Backdrops
• Event program & publicity
• Possible medal reverse

What do we want?
Well, your original ideas, but to get you thinking the design should suit these media & could
represent Australia, our animals, landmarks, and of course fencing themes - could be used.
It could be whimsical, graphic or dramatic and be in a variety of forms to suit the uses above.

The client is the world of Commonwealth fencing. Words are best at a minimum but could
Commonwealth Fencing Championships
Commonwealth Veterans Fencing Championships
29 September – 5 October 2010

The prize? Your graphic ability will be displayed to a Commonwealth audience! You will
receive a certificate of appreciation and you will be published. We will also throw in an entry to
an AFF event in 2010 or 2011 and a “T” shirt from your design. Of course the major prize is
that you will feel so good about it!!!

Please send art or sketches by no later than 7 April 2010 to:
Bill Ronald event director at or P.O. Box 26, Eastwood NSW 2122.

Simon Auty, Andrew Ius, Bill Ronald, Helen Smith, will be the judges. Copyright will be
owned by Fencing Victoria.

Bill Ronald
Event Director
March 2010 Ref:CFC10LOGO

CFC10 - A Major Event of AFF, FV, CFF
phone: 61 2 9804 6995 fax: 61 2 9874 6168 mobile: 61 403 267 330 email:
postal: PO Box 26, Eastwood, NSW 2122, Australia



11/3/2010: More delightful titivation for you.whofour

What ARE these fencers doing and why have TRIFFIDS invaded the Fencing Institute? On another matter, here are those wanting to stand for Fenz positions at the upcoming AGM.

           Election of officers    Nominations received:
President: Susan Grant-Taylor, Ken Claridge, Heather Lear.

Secretary General: Fiona MacDonald, Laura Harvey.

Treasurer: No nominations received.

Appointment of selector(s) Nominations received to date:
Gareth Foley, Mark Rance, Wayne Cui.

Do remember that as a financial member of Fenz YOU are entitled to vote at the AGM on Saturday March 27.


10/3/2010: Wow, a day later and still no breathless windups from foilists and grumpy epeeists. They've either given me up as a bad cause or, seen the humour of the polls. Anyway to cause a few headaches for our friends over the pond, here's a bit of playacting from a well-known member of our Great Brother/Sisterhood of fencing.

Take it away ....... Leon! whoone

(The information contained in this Internet posting is intended
for the viewers only and may contain privileged information, but not
necessarily the official views or opinions of the FIE, the Commonwealth Fencing Federation, New Zealand Fencing, Fencing MidSouth, the University of Canterbury Fencing Club, the Sabre Club, the Australian Fencing Federation, Scottish Fencing or any other democratically elected organisations involved in fencing.
If you are not the intended recipient you must not use, disclose, copy or
distribute this message or the information in it.)



Everyone loves opinion polls, they give that semblance of authority that some people just love and the percentage figures can be used in endless ways to prove all sorts of things, so here’s one that will get up the noses of many involved in our sport – your favourite weapon.

In March last year I dared to suggest, tongue in cheek, that we should get rid of epee and foil and concentrate on sabre since our kids garnered the largest medal haul with the weapon in Aussie events. See ‘’DOING AWAY WITH FOIL AND EPEE COULD WIN NEW ZEALAND FENCING MORE MEDALS!’’ Published March 3 rd 2009. The response from some hyper-ventilating foilists and a couple of phlegmatic epeeists was interesting to say the least.

Now a poll on the Fencing Central website (FenCen) backs up that call by daring to suggest that sabre is the most popular weapon of the three, in the Captital City anyway.

Your Favourite Weapon









( Please, address all your replies to Fencing Central, it's their poll after all!!)



8/3/2010: Fencing MidSouth has a new Leader.

Luke Robertson was elected the new President at Friday's AGM.
Current Secretary Carville Stewart was re-elected, but the Treasurer remains vacant (any offers?).

Club's represented were, United, University, the Sabre Club and the Fencing Institute, plus the school clubs of Christ's, CBHS/CGHS and RHS, though they have no vote.

A freebee for you........Two referees seminars will be held at the Fencing Institute at 7pm next Thursday and Friday at no charge. One for the more experienced on the Thursday and one for wishing to learn about refereeing on the Friday. All welcome, including fencers from schools clubs plus there will be offerings of nice things to those that do turn up.

Now to more interesting things. Who are these folks???whotwo

5/3/2010: Another pix from the Archives.


Diane and Graham partake in a courtly engagement in front of the Students' Association Building at Canterbury University in the late 1960s before the university moved to Ilam.

The building is now the Dux de Lux restaurant which, like the hall (now the Academy picture theatre) the university fencing club trained in, is likely to be joined by a new music conservatoire. Note the canvas clothing and masks that would be frowned upon today yet, to my knowledge, no uni students were injured in the taking of this picture.



An Invitation to a Duel

The country’s oldest swords club starts its 82 nd year of existence on Saturday 6 th March at 10.30am with a series of duels. The Canterbury University Fencing Club will introduce the ancient art and modern sport with displays of foil, epee and sabre fencing in the Ballroom of the University of Canterbury Students Association building on Ilam Road before signing-up new members for 2010.

Fencing is an art form and competitive sport. At its highest level it requires the muscular control of a ballet dancer with the tactical brain of a chess master. It teaches discipline, courage and humility. It is an individual and team sport operating at the social or competitive levels. The duels will provide a dramatic introduction to the sport showcasing the fast and exciting actions and the differences between the three weapons. CUFC is the only club in the land to do its basic instruction in epee, this came about because it is cheaper for impecunious students as there are no metal jackets needed as in foil or sabre.

Members of UCFC have reached national and international levels in the sport and many former members have gone on to high positions in business, science, medicine, politics and other fields of human endeavour (even in the media!). Its present membership includes five New Zealand and Australian champions and fencers from six different countries; Russia, Malaysia, China, South Africa, Saudi Arabia and Canada, a veritable United Nations of fencing.

Contact President Rachel van Heugten at or telephone Vik Manuge at 03 366 6396.



21/2/2010: Former Kiwi Policeman defends his house and family with a sword!

What do you turn to when a horde of machete-weilding thugs break into your home bent on who knows what and your high-tech equipment fails? Why, your dress sword of course. Read on: Thrust and parry the policeman's way scroll down to the bottom of Tim Hume's article on Law and Disorder. There is even a pix of him with his trusty blade. For more on our plucky fencer see: New Zealand Police on line. Perhaps they may introduce a class at Police College in our ancient art and modern sport.


19/2/2010: Visor Fencing Masks Banned As Unsafe.

Sometimes it pays to be a minnow in the world of international fencing as it could save money and, maybe, your life. That's the feeling among many Kiwi fencers who have just heard of the immediate banning of transparent visor masks by the International Fencing Federation (Federation Internationale de'Escrime) after one was pierced at the World Junior Fencing championships in Denmark late last year.

The fencer was not fatally injured but the incident was considered very serious and now the release of the results of an investigation into the accident have turned up some alarming abnormalities in the manufacture of the facemask.

Implications raised by the report have concerned The President of Fencing New Zealand, Susan Grant-Taylor, enough for her to recommend to Kiwi foilists and epeeists, who own a visor mask, not to use them even for training purposes until further notice.

Introduced more that ten years ago in a desire to spice-up the newly televised sport, the see-through masks allowed the spectators to see the faces of the duelling fencers and the exaltation, or anguish, that went with winning or loosing a fight in the ancient art and modern sport.

Like any innovation there was much discussion over the safety, cost and the sheer ugliness of the new masks, but the FIE adopted their use in most of its foil, epee and sabre competitions.

Three weapons are used in modern fencing; two thrusting weapons, foil and epee with which a strong, fit fencer can generate an amazing amount of power in a lunge thrust. Sabre, the third, uses a combination of cuts and thrusts to score hits, but its blade is lighter and more flexible that the foil or epee and hence less likely to pierce a visor mask.

Christchurch epeeist Andreas Sesun, who competed at the World Fencing Champs in Turin in 2006, found that the only the top 16 fencers had to use the mask, so he did not spend the $600 or more to replace his stainless steel mesh example. Some fencers may have had problems with the new mask, internal and external reflections and, for those wearing spectacles, misting and condensation. His coach, Vik Manuge, who has owned his visor mask for many years has found no problems with its use and the better vision it gives is a big plus during lessons however his example is made by a different manufacturer - Leon Paul. Another Christchurch fencer, Luke Robertson, who fences Sabre has owned a visor mask since 2006 with no problems.

Now Kiwi fencers who are in training for the international Challenge Australia epee competition in Sydney in May and the Commonwealth Fencing Championships to be held in Melbourne in September are waiting to see if the visor mask will be reintroduced or not - the decision could save them a pocket-full of cash and, perhaps, their lives!


16/2/2010: Another one bites the dust - yeah a bit corny, but its true, another Christchurch fencer is moving to Auckland.bryn

Bryn Roberts is moving north to study fine arts after winning a national scholarship, worth $2000 per year, for sculpture. But the bad or good news, depending on your view, for Auckland fencers is that the former Burnside High School pupil has sold her fencing gear aiming to concentrate on her studies.



12/2/2010: Great news for Kiwi junior fencers - 23 of them have been selected to attend the Oceania Fencing Confederation organised training camps in foil, epee and sabre next month.

The epee and foil camps will be held in the spanking new fencing centre in Melbourne on 20 and 21 March (epee) and foil 27 and 28 March, with the sabre camp in Sydney on 27 and 28 March.

MTC: a full list of the lucky 23 will be published as soon as they are confirmed by Fenz.


10/2/2010: Would YOU wear a transparent visor mask??? spaceoddity

The FIE states in a recent urgent message to fencers: ''... the Executive Committee has decided to suspend and forbid, until further notice, the use of the transparent visor mask both in foil and epee, at all FIE official competitions.'' And many fencers would suggest not using one for training either. For more, see Urgent letter 3


9/2/2010: Hanging on for dear life.....Whacko

With tape wrapped around his brakes from an earlier fall, former Christchurch fencer Jackson Carter-Smith hurtles down the hill on $12,000 worth of bike at the New Zealand downhill mountain biking champs at Governors Bay, near Christchurch.

The Christchurch Boys High School pupil gave up fencing last year to concentrate on mountain biking and is in training for the Oceanic champs in March. Carter-Smith was 7 th in the 2007 champs and 7 th in the 2007 Australian U17 epee event. He says mountain biking is a more adrenaline inducing sport than fencing and that there are more mountain bike racers in Christchurch than fencers. Just as well he is hooked on adrenaline for he finished his run without any brakes! Jack’s brother Max, also a fencer, will be starting university this year and plans to join the University of Canterbury Fencing Club.


7/2/2010: What's Vegimite and why was Yves Auriol avoiding it? Thanks for your e-mails. Vegimite is the Aussie version of the Kiwi MARMITE and why was Yves avoiding it - you will have to ask him....the gos is that US Customs removed Yves' tub upon re-entry to the States. Have a look here for more about a great fencing master: US Fencing Hall of Famemore yves

Coming up in a day or so, The Magnificent Fourteen!! See recently added caption to the group pic below!



American fencing maitre Yves Auriol was nicknamed the Vegemite Kid at a training camp he ran in Adelaide back in 1989. In the top photo he is seen backing away from tub of the sticky stuff proffered by a well-known Australian coach (cropped out). The second photo show the attendees at the camp - which one do you think proffered the Vegemite?


Front row: Colin Simpson, Jane Menary, Vivienne Tucker (formerly Vivienne Watts), Colin Oberg, Helen Swan, Yves Auriol, Danielle Seal, Michael Hill, James Fazekas Back row: Trevor Fowler, Jenny Cassidy, Rob Richards, Alwyn Wardle, last but not least, Vic Manuge who took the photos.

The four-times US Olympic fencing team foil coach developed a strange fascination for the salty black spread at the camp he ran for coaches studying for their Australian Fencing Association qualifications in foil. Many of the participants were accommodated thanks to the South Australian Sports Institute.

A left-hander, Auriol, who taught equally well with both hands and who encouraged the Aussie and (solitary) Kiwi coaches to do the same, was a long time coach at Notre Dame University in Indiana. More

Now teaching in Las Vegas, sometimes known as the retirement and entertainment capital of America, he was made a member of the US Fencing Hall of Fame in 2007 – perhaps the vegemite had some impact on his career?? Read more about Maitre Auriol at: Nevada Fencing


26/1/2010: Fencing New Zealand's 2010 tournament list is up. See Here!

25/1/2010: And now some words about governance and democracy.

Notice is hereby given that the Annual General Meeting of The Canterbury Provincial Amateur Fencing Council Incorporated (Fencing Mid-South) will be held on Friday March 5th in room 101, Cranmer Centre, corner of Montreal and Armagh Streets (entry off Montreal Street) commencing at 6.00 pm. Plus here are the dates of Fencing MidSouth's meetings for the year:

Feb 19

Mar 5 AGM

Mar 19

April 30

May 28

July 2

Aug 6

Sept 17

Nov 5

Dec 9

Jan 28 2011

Fencers can attend the AGM and general meetings, but only affiliated members can vote at the AGM or give their proxy vote to someone else. See here for more: MidSouth


22/1/2010: Ten Years After -have a look at former top foilist Alex Scott in action...mixed martial arts then have a look at the Panther Page and learn more about the sloper,


STOP PRESS: A potential fencer....


20/1/2010: Here's a great excuse for a fencing celebration: ''That's right, this is the 100th year of fencing at Victoria University of Wellington.'' In celebration of this achievement, the uni is running an Over 18 competition on the 3rd and 4th of July 2010. This competition will be for all weapons and will include a dinner on the 3rd of July.

The venue for the competition has been booked at VUW Kelburn Rec Centre (of
course), the dinner is yet to be confirmed (any suggestions?). More information will be released closer to the time. If you have any questions, feel free to ask, orto put in your entry, talk with Jeremy Peters (Jezza), Secretary, Victoria University of Wellington Swords Club,

See a list of uni fencing Blues (sports award) in the 2008 Archives (April) page!


18/1/2010: Ten Year's After...We know what has happened to two of the four fencers in the picture; Frankie and Hamish, now spies report on Chris McCarthy, second on the left in the pix, and Alex Scott, third from the left. Chris is living in Nelson and Alex is studying in Wellington and doing martial arts - he was spotted on TV by former fencer David Winchester now living in Adelaide, and still with his trademark grin.

Something different to tickle your fancy in the fencing off-season - what is it? sloper

Yes, it is a motorcycle and not a tiny Fiat or Morris Minor, so anyone know what kind? It was snapped on Kodak Tri-X yonks ago in central Christchurch.


15/1/2010: More grins, but this time from a line-up of oldies - all former national champions, if my memory serves me correctly, and all have worked for fencing and Fencing New Zealand over the years. A small gift for the first person to correctly identify them - contact address below:oldies

From left: Percy Temple. Steve Clarke, Don McRae, Viv Jenkins, Keith Mann. Thanks Tricia your Morris Minor key ring is on its way!!


13/1/2010: Grin and grips. In the newspaper industry these are what photographers call the shots they take where people are posed smiling at the camera with an award or suchlike in their hands. They are anathema to real hard-news photographers, but to the gossip industry and as a record they are essential - here are some from fencing - are you here??






11/1/2010: Nice touch by the organisers of last weekend's Scottish Open fencing championships in Edinburgh. With the Northern Hemisphere hit hard by huge snowfalls and icy weather (see earlier pix) they provided two phone numbers for fencers to ring the organisers if they were being badly delayed by the weather. The organisers then tried to delay the start of that fencers pool bout until they arrived.

STOP PRESS. Snow on the Forth Bridges. If you look closely at this photo just received from Rosyth you can see the snow on the the Forth Rail Bridge in the background and the Forth Road Bridge, foreground. Thanks Ian!Ian

For more try Scottish Fencing and for general winter happenings The Scotsman Note the story about the privatisation of road gritting and the seemingly deadly results since it happened.


10/1/2010: Is this a paean of delight or defeat?? Its one of our bro's from over the pond. Hint - look at the score.



7/1/2010: Make your fencing plans for 2010.

The Aussie's have published the dates of their major comps here: AFF including Challenge Australia and Commonwealth Fencing Championships.

While, Fencing New Zealand, will publish their list here!

You can view a list of CFC champions Here! and Challenge Australia winners Here!


5/1/2010: Look out you pesky North Islanders, Christchurch fencer Katherine Taylor will be moving to Auckland in early February to live and work. A double national champion, sabre and epee, and long-time member of the University of Canterbury Fencing Club, Katherine says goodbye to training partner Luke Robertson. landk

To find out more about Christchurch, try this: the nation's top newspaper and to find out more about UCFC have a look here: ucfc.


1/1/2010: A bit corny, but may your cup overflow in 2010! And a range of cups and fencing silverware from round the world: auscups


Wellington Fencing Club is planning a knees-up and competition to celebrate 100 years of fencing at the Uni. It will be held round June 2010 so you old Varsity fencers have a bit of time to de-rust your weapons and start limbering up. It would be a great way to celebrate our ancient art and modern sport. Information will be posted as it comes to hand.



Archived Gossip: 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007