In Paris, our men’s team (Dmitry Lapkes, Alexander Buikevich, Valery Priemko and Alexey Likhachevsky) lost to Romania in the fight for bronze — 41:45. Nevertheless, fourth place at the World Fencing Championship is a major breakthrough for Belarus: its best result since gaining independence. At the European championships, Belarusian fencers claimed silver in 2007, in Belgian Ghent, and bronze in 2008, in Kiev.
The results in Paris could have been better but, in the quarter-finals, captain Dmitry Lapkes was injured during play against China. On the way to fourth place, our squad defeated Brazil, China and the 2008 Beijing Olympic champion, host France. Struggling for bronze, against Romania, Dmitry Lapkes fought briefly, despite being in pain. In the semi-finals, without Lapkes, our team lost to world leader Italy. However, our Belarusian fencers posed a worthy threat.
The Belarusian women’s team (Olga Kiseleva, Natalia Moskina and Darya Andreeva) were knocked out of the event in the 1/16 finals, ending their first performance at a women’s team fencing contest.