In first, Israeli wins European fencing championship
24-year-old Yuval Freilich takes the gold in Dusseldorf contest; ‘it’s the most incredible feeling,’ he says
Israeli fencer Yuval Freilich on Tuesday won the gold medal in the European Fencing Championships in Dusseldorf, Germany.
Freilich, ranked 40th in the world, managed to defeat Italian Andrea Santarelli, ranked 13th, in the contest’s final.
The two ended the first third of their fight in a tie at 3:3, but Freilich took the lead in the next two thirds and finished 15:9.
Freilich is the first Israeli fencer to win a European championship.
Freilich, 24, grew up in the settlement of Neve Daniel. He is the son of Australian immigrants and has been fencing since age 5. He won two gold medals in teen championships in 2014 and 2015 and a silver in the under-23 category in 2016.
“It’s the most incredible feeling,” he said in an interview posted to Facebook by the European Fencing Confederation.
“Really a fantastic day. Everything connected, the fencing, the energy, the feeling. It just all came together and this is what came out. Amazing, really unbelievable feeling.”