14 July 2015
Sofya Velikaya and Alexey Yakimenko became World Champions 2015 in Fencing!
Men’s and Women’s Individual Sabre finals of the World Fencing Championships took place on July 14 in Moscow. Olympic Games winners Alexey Yakimenko and Sofya Velikaya brought two gold medals for the Russian team.
29-year-old Sofya Velikaya was the first to celebrate the victory. On her way to the final our sabre fencer caused her fans and the coaching staff headed by Christian Bauer of France some anxiety only onece.
At the beginning of the semi-final duel Russian athlete was giving in to Anna Marton of Hungary 0:4 and 1:5. But then Sofya Velikaya, who occupies 2nd spot of the current FIE ranking, hit the ground running and won with a score of 15:8. And in Gold battle Sofya left no chances to Berger of France – 15:12.
This year Sofya Velikaya won the European Championships and the World Championships. Moreover, this native of Alma-Ata became the planet’s best individual sabre fencer for the second time.
She got her first win in 2011. Since then she has managed to win silver at the London Olympic Games…and become a mother. In 2013, in the family of Sofya Velikaya and Alexey Mishin, 2004 Olympic Games champion in Greco-Roman Wrestling, a son was born named Oleg.
“I think I’m the first fencer who managed to return to the high level of performance after childbirth, – said the World Champion in an interview with reporters – The final match was difficult, although it appeared to be an easy. I was too nervous. It was distracting. The nervousness is always there, when you are one step away from the gold medal. I am very happy with today’s victory. I want to thank my fans for their support. Now it’s about time for me and my teammates to win team competitions.
So far Alexey Yakimenko has become World champion six times, but only in the team standings. And finally his lifelong dream came true – he became the best at the world Championships in the individual event!
Yakimenko had a bone to pick with his final’s opponent Daryl Homer of USA. At the Games in London this particular American athlete prevented Yakimenko from receiving his individual Olympic medal in the 1/8 finals. Well, he got revenge with a convincing win. During the decisive fight 31-year-old Russian athlete defeated his rival – 7:0, 10:1 and finally 15:5.
“Going to the final battle, I wasn’t thinking about revenge”, – said Alexey Yakimenko. – My defeat by Homer in London is already history. I forgot about it long ago. Of course, now I’m overwhelmed with emotions. After all it’s my first individual gold medal at the world competition! I walked through failures, sleepless nights, hard workouts. I am glad that my sufferings were not in vain. Many thanks to all those who supported me. I’m happy!”