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munkey
-17th August 2010, 22:28
Announced with the usual fanfare and can be found on the BF website by the truly determined. To save you the bother, it's here:
http://www.britishfencing.com/international/gb-teams/junior_european_championships_team/

Regards

Munkey

Spider5
-17th August 2010, 22:40
Announced with the usual fanfare and can be found on the BF website by the truly determined. To save you the bother, it's here:
http://www.britishfencing.com/international/gb-teams/junior_european_championships_team/

Regards

Munkey

So if Jack Hudson is the Men's Epee second reserve, who is the first?

pinkelephant
-17th August 2010, 23:25
Perhaps reserve 1 has already been promoted into the team?

D'Artignan
-17th August 2010, 23:38
I would doubt it, seeing as it does say that this is the proposed team. Unless one of the people ahead had been ruled out prior to publishing and this hadn't been picked up on.

TomA
-18th August 2010, 10:25
I would doubt it, seeing as it does say that this is the proposed team. Unless one of the people ahead had been ruled out prior to publishing and this hadn't been picked up on.Looking at the rankings, I would suggest that is what has happened.

Peter Pan
-19th August 2010, 10:09
The WF selection - or lack of it - is a little difficult to understand, by me at least

Does anyone know where the selection criteria have gone to on the BF website?

Tubby
-23rd August 2010, 15:07
From what I recall the selection criteria for the Junior European Championships were TBA and last I looked (last week) it still said this in the ranking and selection scheme. Maybe you can ask Mike O'Donnell to lobby BFA for the criteria used. I've looked at the list and tried to find a criterion that fit all the fencers and failed and as I don't have the list of "those who had been asked but could not go" I've too many pieces of the jigsaw missing to make an educated guess.

MikeODonnell
-24th August 2010, 10:51
This is definitely an issue that the Parents Group would be more than willing to assist with. Interested parties should email info at calecom (dot) co (dot) uk detailing their concerns and we will make representations on your behalf.

Beyond the Parents Charter, lobbying for better communication and supporting PARENTS will be the Groups main remit.

Cheers,
Mike

Meg_SF
-24th August 2010, 11:41
Doesn't affect us, but selection criteria would be good to know for the future!

Tubby
-24th August 2010, 19:20
http://britishfencing.com/uploads/files/junior_ranking_scheme_2010-11_finalversion3.pdf

Junior Ranking Scheme is accessed on the BF site via the link to the Cadet Ranking Scheme

tigger
-25th August 2010, 08:36
I think this ranking scheme refers to the 2011 European champs. Previously I believe Junior Europeans was top 4 in the national ranking had automatic selection, subject to satisfactory fitness.

Tubby
-25th August 2010, 09:34
"The scoring period for Junior fencers starts on the 1st September 2010. No competitions will count for selection before this date except the 2010 Junior World Championships; this event will count towards selection for the Junior European Championships in November 10 (selection for this is part of the 09-10 points system)..." Extract from 2010-11 Scheme


"Junior European Championships 2010 – 4 fencers per weapon (the event may be moved so selection rules TBC in November 09)" Extract from 2009-10 Scheme


To me, there is a missing document, that being the JEC 2010 Selection Scheme. The 2010/11 scheme says no comps before 1 Sept count except Baku U20. There have been no comps (as its not Sept yet) to count other than Baku. Very few people got ranking points from Baku under the 2009/10 scheme. That list (those with points) and the JEC team list is very different. So there are other criteria being used. Order of merit and something else as only one WF selected (though maybe only one was prepared to stump up for Russia as it will be expensive albeit not in the Baku league).



(...concerned that I hadn't kicked the Fencing Forum habit as I had hoped I would...)

Hungry Hippo
-25th August 2010, 14:59
(...concerned that I hadn't kicked the Fencing Forum habit as I had hoped I would...)


Missed you, Tubs..............You must've known you'd fall off the wagon!!!!

Apart from a small flurry in the spring, that was a good 10 months in the wilderness. Back with a bang with another hard-hitting post - good work, and welcome back!

anothermum
-25th August 2010, 17:02
I would imagine that there are a number of reasons here:

a) cost
b) where fencers are currently located
c) experience at junior internationals
d) the commonwealths ... some juniors may have elected to fence this and not many could afford time away for both events.

Not a great response to the Parent's Group - quite a few of us are on Facebook so maybe setting up a group on that could be the way forward ... not as public as the forum and only those interested need join and contribute

Peter Pan
-25th August 2010, 21:26
I would imagine that there are a number of reasons here:

a) cost
b) where fencers are currently located
c) experience at junior internationals
d) the commonwealths ... some juniors may have elected to fence this and not many could afford time away for both events.



No - I have checked with the two Scots who would have expected to be selected and neither have had any contact or explanation from FC/IC. One (Tash - no1 in ranking) has had considerable experience at GB level, performed very well in the world teams in Belfast (not selected for individuals) and, like many juniors, has chosen not to go to the Commonwealths, preferring to concentrate on her final year as a GB junior.

As far as cost goes, it would at least be nice to have the opportunity to decide to spend your own money (again) to represent GB, if you meet the published selection criteria.

hokers
-26th August 2010, 08:50
Three words.

Gav
-26th August 2010, 10:48
Three words.

I am scratching my head. Which ones?

Keith.A.Smith
-26th August 2010, 12:56
Hi All,

Clare Halsted in the Chair of the International Committee.

If you have any questions or queries do contact her directly.

Keith

Tubby
-26th August 2010, 12:56
I am scratching my head. Which ones?I think "Discretionary" and "Selection" are two if I recall one of Hokers' mantras correctly.

For those who asked (in camera): the fencers that scored points in Baku and are still young enough (I acknowledge that I am presuming 1990 birth year is too old even if birthday is after 30 October) to be selected are:
WS Davies
MS X
WF X
MF Fitzgerald, Davis
WE Chang, McGeever
ME White

coach carson
-15th September 2010, 21:57
I'm not sure if people have quite caught on to the consequences of the WF decision. Until there is some explanation, it would appear that regardless of how hard you train and how well you perform, complying with all requirements to make the correct ranking, it seems that you might not get selected. Is that meant to motivate anyone? I hope someone calls foul for everyone's sake.

LifeBeginsAt58
-15th September 2010, 22:48
As much as I've disagreed with PP in the past, mostly because I was ignorant of the History and, therefore, allowed hubristic prejudice to overcome
subjectivity, Roy deserves an honest answer as does CC.
Give us your criteria and we will meet it.
Change, midstream, and we get befuddled.
Before you criticize us, explain why the rules appeared to have changed.
Darn it, my understanding is, at best, fuzzy but I suspect that these two actors need to be given clear guidance.

Macbond
-15th September 2010, 23:06
I'm not sure if people have quite caught on to the consequences of the WF decision. Until there is some explanation, it would appear that regardless of how hard you train and how well you perform, complying with all requirements to make the correct ranking, it seems that you might not get selected. Is that meant to motivate anyone? I hope someone calls foul for everyone's sake.

Not actually as uncommon a problem as you might think CC.

Long established (5 years and strongly defended during that period) selection policies appear to be able to change without warning, are open to creation or material updating after the selection events are completed and still remain unpublished or unavailable for viewing even upon repeated request for groups other than BF - look at the Junior Ranking results for WF prior to the UKSG as an example.

You can finish better than the next fencer in 3 out of 4 events AND the second best in the u17 rankings (ahead of the next eligible fencer) and still be discounted at the age of 16 from an u18 event on the basis of "investment potential"...

You almost completely echoed my comment to the relevant parties which were -
"If the decision of the Committee stands, XXXX XXXXX are in danger of sending a clear message to the fencers and those bodies who do currently support your fencers with investment potential such as Asda Sporting Chance, that putting in a consistently better performance across a season is not going to be enough.
Fencers will also have to fulfill other criteria which may not be published or advised to the fencers but applied after the event by the XXXXXX XXXXX and which neither the board can change, nor the fencers can later appeal.
In fact you would be saying nothing more than a XXXX XXXX may decide to cherry pick any discretionary fencers at their determination even when the evidence lies to the contrary. That might be considered by some to be a corruption of a basic sporting principle."

Selection in this sport is neither wholly fair nor equitable and it is no wonder we are losing so many fencers who become disheartened, demoralised and disillusioned from such activities.

Lynne
-16th September 2010, 10:01
Not actually as uncommon a problem as you might think CC.

Long established (5 years and strongly defended during that period) selection policies appear to be able to change without warning, are open to creation or material updating after the selection events are completed and still remain unpublished or unavailable for viewing even upon repeated request for groups other than BF - look at the Junior Ranking results for WF prior to the UKSG as an example.

You can finish better than the next fencer in 3 out of 4 events AND the second best in the u17 rankings (ahead of the next eligible fencer) and still be discounted at the age of 16 from an u18 event on the basis of "investment potential"...

You almost completely echoed my comment to the relevant parties which were -
"If the decision of the Committee stands, XXXX XXXXX are in danger of sending a clear message to the fencers and those bodies who do currently support your fencers with investment potential such as Asda Sporting Chance, that putting in a consistently better performance across a season is not going to be enough.
Fencers will also have to fulfill other criteria which may not be published or advised to the fencers but applied after the event by the XXXXXX XXXXX and which neither the board can change, nor the fencers can later appeal.
In fact you would be saying nothing more than a XXXX XXXX may decide to cherry pick any discretionary fencers at their determination even when the evidence lies to the contrary. That might be considered by some to be a corruption of a basic sporting principle."

Selection in this sport is neither wholly fair nor equitable and it is no wonder we are losing so many fencers who become disheartened, demoralised and disillusioned from such activities.

It's not just the Juniors!

I refer you to a facebook post:

Good interview Rhys, you did well to sound positive about fencing in UK - shame you are still the only GB Senior foilist qualified for the World Championships in Paris who is still unfunded and not deemed good enough for the team event.
http://external.ak.fbcdn.net/safe_image.php?d=d12d4cc0a53708cd3caedfdce824e97c&w=90&h=90&url=http%3A%2F%2Fnews.bbcimg.co.uk%2Fmedia%2Fimage s%2F48879000%2Fjpg%2F_48879299_bbcawards.jpg
(http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/fencing/8946813.stm)

BBC Sport - Fencing - Rhys Melia is excited by Olympic prospects (http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/fencing/8946813.stm)
news.bbc.co.uk
Birmingham-based fencer Rhys Melia believes he is in a good position to reach the 2012 Olympics.

Tubby
-16th September 2010, 10:41
Lynne - I feel your pain.

We're still waiting for feedback on Mudge's TASS application. We know she was not successful in her application but we don't know why (yet). It seems that having made the qualifying standard to attend every cadet and junior world and european championships in the past 3 years and being the highest FIE U20 ranked female fencer across all weapons is not enough to get TASS. Mind you, having done an analysis on relative performance of TASS there is a glaring and obvious performance question which I will leave everyone to find for themselves (don't want HQ to think me a sh1t stirrer particularly as they have been very very very very very good to Mudge which we are and have been grateful for and I'm in danger of biting the hand that feeds her).

coach carson
-16th September 2010, 14:11
No - I have checked with the two Scots who would have expected to be selected and neither have had any contact or explanation from FC/IC. One (Tash - no1 in ranking) has had considerable experience at GB level, performed very well in the world teams in Belfast (not selected for individuals) and, like many juniors, has chosen not to go to the Commonwealths, preferring to concentrate on her final year as a GB junior.

As far as cost goes, it would at least be nice to have the opportunity to decide to spend your own money (again) to represent GB, if you meet the published selection criteria.


Then it must be because they are Scottish. And girls. Scottish boys who achieve the standard don't seem to have the same problem.

Not quite a Vet
-16th September 2010, 20:34
You can finish better than the next fencer in 3 out of 4 events AND the second best in the u17 rankings (ahead of the next eligible fencer) and still be discounted at the age of 16 from an u18 event on the basis of "investment potential"...


The selection process for the UK School Games was quite a simple one and very easy to access through the internet. It stated clearly that the first two places in the team were to be taken from Ranking Tables, leaving the other two positions discretionary choice. I would presume that the selectors would have looked at the Cadet Development Competitions as well as results closer to the time of selection. These results may have indicated that perhaps a more accomplished fencer was chosen.

scottishsabreur
-16th September 2010, 21:08
Not getting involved in the rights and wrongs (perceived or otherwise) of this discussion. It's quite simple. As Hokers says, "Three words."

To all those selected, congrats and good luck!

LifeBeginsAt58
-17th September 2010, 02:02
Didn't pick up the Hokers reference Jen. Darn the clouding of understanding that senescence brings but I, wholeheartedly, endorse your parting sentiment.
Well done to those selected.
I would also add the phrase, much attributed to WSC, KBO to those who were not!

Macbond
-17th September 2010, 09:40
The selection process for the UK School Games was quite a simple one and very easy to access through the internet. It stated clearly that the first two places in the team were to be taken from Ranking Tables, leaving the other two positions discretionary choice. I would presume that the selectors would have looked at the Cadet Development Competitions as well as results closer to the time of selection. These results may have indicated that perhaps a more accomplished fencer was chosen.

I agree the BF published process was quite clear - the problem comes when the discretionary powers are given to the HC's because not all of them operate in a consistent, transparent or accountable fashion.

I would certainly hope that where discretion is applied the more accomplished fencer would be given preference, however in this case that is not apparent.

At the Junior ranking events the fencer who was not selected did better than the other in 3 out of 4 of the events they both competed in, and the selectee actually only pointed in 2 of the Junior events they did overall. Where selection is drawn from the Junior rankings you would expect those to be given extra weighting but that's not obvious here.

At Cadet events the ratio was the same (i.e. she did better in 3 out of 4 events which they both competed in).

Over 50% of the points scored by the selectee came down to just one comp (the Nationals where they narrowly pointed and the other narrowly didn't) but if we are down to making choices on a single event then we should expect a lot of weird decisions moving forward - everyone has bad days and whilst I'm not making excuses, at the Nationals the non-selectee was carrying an injury and the selectors had been informed by email (though apparently they can't find it, so didn't take that into account either...).

The policy used for discretionary choices was apparently only determined on 27th Feb - 2 days before the date by which selections had to be made and well over a month after the last reckonable event was held - the rankings could not change by then.
If any performances were used after the end of the ranking events than that's wholly wrong.

The actual primary reason given for the decision was the respective ages of the fencers - I wasn't myself aware that preference would be given to younger fencers but apparently that now is the case for this particular HC, but of course since they won't provide their policy or criteria to the fencers they have no idea what they need to do to get the best chance of getting selected if they don't make top 2 (other then lie about their age perhaps??)

This was a complete change from the past 5 years of youth selection and specifically the previous UKSG selections in recent years where strict rankings were used throughout. That led to the bizarre situation a year or so back where a fencer was picked who had not been competing for months and had moved out of the sport completely.

In a sport which relies on longevity, takes years to master and where many fencers don't fully develop their potential until their late teens or twenties, it is inconceivable to me that 16 year olds are passed over for u18 selection on the basis of their age - nonetheless that appears to be the position here.

hokers
-17th September 2010, 10:14
Didn't pick up the Hokers reference Jen.

Hopefully forum regulars will have had this drilled into them now. The three words are:

Discretionary. Selection. Bad.

Baldric
-17th September 2010, 11:32
Hopefully forum regulars will have had this drilled into them now. The three words are:

Discretionary. Selection. Bad.

Hhhhhmmmmm.

Sorry to disappoint you Hokers, but I am afraid the board of England Fencing don't agree with you.

After the selection processes for the UKSG, the S5N and the Commonwealths, I asked the board to formally consider the selection policies where we used discretion. I raised the subject because the discretionary process caused considerable ill feeling and mis-understanding.

(Just for the record, EF does not use discretionary selection at U15, but does at all other agegroups except vets which is run by a separate organisation).

The board includes several forum regulars, some of whom are also parents of cadet or junior fencers who are, or have been subject to these policies. Whilst some of the processes needed to be improved and our clear guidelines for fencers and selectors were welcomed, the board nonetheless resolved to continue with the discretionary principle where it applied. (Usually 2 direct from ranking and others by discretion).

Fairness, motivational factors and transparency of process were all discussed.

In the end they concluded that the paramount goal of selection was to select the best team for the job, and not to keep everyone happy.

From my point of view this has the undesirable effect of guaranteeing that my inbox will be full of incandescent emails, accusing me and the board of just about every vice and crime under the sun. Unfortunately the frustration of disappointed fencers and parents often results in some very unpleasant accusations, which I am sure they regret making when they have calmed down.

Nevertheless, I think that the board came to the right decision. I also think that lots of forum members who are drawn to Hokers admittedly attractive mantra, would be amazed if they knew the lengths to which selectors and the responsible committees go to ensure that the processes are genuinely fair.

At this time, if you want to be sure of your place in an England team with discretionary selection, make sure that you are in the top two places in the ranking.

Discretionary. Selection. Has. Its. Place. Hokers. Solution. Is. Too. Simplistic.

Ray Stafford
(President, England Fencing Ltd)

hokers
-17th September 2010, 13:01
Sorry to disappoint you Hokers, but I am afraid the board of England Fencing don't agree with you.


I know, it's my mantra, not that of EF. I still think I'm right though.



Discretionary. Selection. Has. Its. Place. Hokers. Solution. Is. Too. Simplistic.


Mine is WAAAY more snappy too.



the paramount goal of selection was to select the best team for the job, and not to keep everyone happy.


I'm pretty sure I don't agree with this either. There are many examples, particularly relating to leaving out older, more experienced fencers in favour of younger ones with potential in an effort to build up a team for the future (good parallels with cricket here) whereby the best team isn't always selected, with future events in mind.

My point has always been that it makes a mockery of the system to spend time/money/effort in gaining ranking points to have them subsequently ignored on the basis of the opinions of some people around a table. I'd be more than happy to have the first two by ranking and the next 3 by bouts between the next 6 in the rankings, as long as it's not based on opinion, just something tangible.

Peter Pan
-17th September 2010, 13:08
Hhhhhmmmmm.


At this time, if you want to be sure of your place in an England team with discretionary selection, make sure that you are in the top two places in the ranking.




Unfortunately, even being no 1 in the rankings isn't good enough for GB WF junior selection - despite what it said in the published selection criteria!

LifeBeginsAt58
-17th September 2010, 13:27
Whoa there McB!
Accomplished, less accomplished? This has all the signs of degenerating into a giant pi**ing contest.
SF looked at the candidates, at least two as we can infer.
For whatever reason, after a vote, they picked one and thus excluded others.
I guess they applied the criteria that Baldric outlined above.
Dunno, wasn't there, but they clearly didn't share your opinion as to levels of accomplishment.
Investment potential? Since that decision was taken the chosen youngster has represented her country at B AND A level and is a Niffed senior.
Pretty good investment I'd say.
Pop into the Dunfermline Fencing Club website to learn more.
My advice to you Owen is to move on. Sh*t happens.

Macbond
-17th September 2010, 13:39
Whoa there McB!
Accomplished, less accomplished? This has all the signs of degenerating into a giant pi**ing contest.
SF looked at the candidates, at least two as we can infer.
For whatever reason, after a vote, they picked one and thus excluded others.
I guess they applied the criteria that Baldric outlined above.
Dunno, wasn't there, but they clearly didn't share your opinion as to levels of accomplishment.
Investment potential? Since that decision was taken the chosen youngster has represented her country at B AND A level and is a Niffed senior.
Pretty good investment I'd say.
Pop into the Dunfermline Fencing Club website to learn more.
My advice to you Owen is to move on. Sh*t happens.

"Life" - I never raised the "accomplished v. less accomplished" debate - "NotQuite" did, neither did I mention the HC in question - you did that.

I'll spare your blushes by not exposing the full facts behind this - you know absolutely nothing about the background - if you ever do decide that you want to know the sorry details then come and see me - you know where I am.

Thread closed from my point of view.

Owen

Baldric
-17th September 2010, 13:51
I know, it's my mantra, not that of EF. I still think I'm right though.



Mine is WAAAY more snappy too.


Can't argue with that. And we all know that if an idea makes a good soundbite, it must be right! :whistle:



I'm pretty sure I don't agree with this either. There are many examples, particularly relating to leaving out older, more experienced fencers in favour of younger ones with potential in an effort to build up a team for the future (good parallels with cricket here) whereby the best team isn't always selected, with future events in mind.


I think that this is an argument that is more likely to be made by GB than England. We have far fewer foreign events, and the biggest of them, the two commonwealth events, are 3 or 4 yrs between. For many of our senior fencers, their career planning is around their GB international career, with England representation hopefully in honourable second place.



My point has always been that it makes a mockery of the system to spend time/money/effort in gaining ranking points to have them subsequently ignored on the basis of the opinions of some people around a table. I'd be more than happy to have the first two by ranking and the next 3 by bouts between the next 6 in the rankings, as long as it's not based on opinion, just something tangible.

I absolutely understand the frustration felt - as a parent. Jnr was on the wrong side of a discretionary decision on at least one occasion. However, as an NGB official there are other factors, particularly fencers returning from injury, that press in the other direction.

EF's new guidelines do move things forward - particularly the notification of the selection zone in advance, the invitation to submit additional information (like the injury example) in advance of selection, and the right to challenge the selection if the selectors have made an error of process, or have based their decision on inaccurate information.

I also think that EF can probably afford to have a slightly more administratively burdensome process than BF could easily manage, simply because we have so many fewer events, and usually have more time to spend on each event as well as a longer time between selection date and event.

Ray

Meg_SF
-19th September 2010, 18:47
All I can say is that I am confused!! Clarity please, sooner rather than later (we do seem to be heading in the right direction, but not quickly enough I think :-S)

In my opinion, it should be absolutely crystal-clear what you have to do/achieve in order to qualify/be selected for the big events.

I'm with Hokers et al on this one I think.

Hungry Hippo
-20th September 2010, 07:26
I can see the merits of both points of view here, so will happily sit on the fence to some degree, but will maybe side with Balders by stating that there should always be an allowance for discretion.

If things always happened in black and white, it would be fine to allow a strict selection policy, but there are so many events that could influence the rankings to distort the true picture - Injury, for sure, lack of funding for another, perhaps non-attendance due to travel disruption, family illness etc.

There could be so many unforeseen circumstances that it would be unwise to discount these factors by having no allowance for discretionary selection - you don't have to use it!

Perhaps where I do differ from Baldric is that where discretion is used, such as in this case when this thread started, then the reasons should be made public, to justify the selection committees position.

The decision here is a perfect example - the selection appears to make no sense, so what was going through the committees minds when they made this choice?

A failure to do so opens the NGB and it's committee up to all sorts of charges, which would be nullified by a little communication with the community and would explain the sort of nonsense this selection appears to have created.

Baldric
-20th September 2010, 12:10
Perhaps where I do differ from Baldric is that where discretion is used, such as in this case when this thread started, then the reasons should be made public, to justify the selection committees position.


The EF position is that a fencer can ask for an explanation, in the same way that you can ask a ref to phrase a decision.

The fencer can't appeal against the selectors judgement, but can appeal if the explanation reveals that the selectors based a decision on demonstrably incorrect information, or improperly applied the selection rules. The full guidelines are on the EF site, and they are pointed out to all fencers in the selection zone.

We don't make the explanations public, because to do so could compromise the fencer's right to privacy, and sometimes involves medical or personal information on one or more fencers.

Ray

hokers
-20th September 2010, 13:24
How about this as a suggestion then?

First two places in the rankings qualify automatically, next 6 places plus two wildcard places go into a L8 DE, top 2 qualify.

Gives you the option to include anyone who might have been seriously affected by injury or whatever, but means that the result comes down to form on the day. Everyone gets a chance and can only blame themselves if they fail to win the DE that would have got them there.

mendacious dog
-20th September 2010, 13:52
But where would we run this d.e.? On what weekend? If 2 of your 8 fencers are almost in Scotland, and 2 are in Truro, some of them are going to have to do some serious travelling. Do they have to pay for their own transport to this mini-competition?

And do we have this L8 DE before each separate competition that requires a selection, or just once for the season? And what if its on the day of fencer #3's granny's funeral? Are the six competitions he got good results in earlier in the season wasted if he cant get to the mini selection event?

I cant help feel that even the fencers might prefer a 'discretionary selection' than another trip (for a very small amount of fencing - four of 'em will only fence one fight!). But I'm sure the discussion will follow!


:dogs:

Woof

hokers
-20th September 2010, 14:08
Well I kinda meant for each major championships. No doubt the venue would be problematic, but we should remember that there are certain competitions throughout the year that pretty much all the people in contention would normally be present at. We don't make this complaint about Olympic Zonal qualifiers presumably?
I would also suggest that travel expenses to any UK competition would probably be dwarfed by comparison to going to the international event they were trying to qualify for.

Not saying I have all the answers, I'm trying to fix this for the people who get bumped out of contention due to discretionary selections really. At least this way they would get a chance.

Baldric
-20th September 2010, 16:39
How about this as a suggestion then?

First two places in the rankings qualify automatically, next 6 places plus two wildcard places go into a L8 DE, top 2 qualify.

Gives you the option to include anyone who might have been seriously affected by injury or whatever, but means that the result comes down to form on the day. Everyone gets a chance and can only blame themselves if they fail to win the DE that would have got them there.

my emphasis.

Apart from the obvious logisitical difficulties of running such an event, how do you select the wildcards?

And don't say "selectors discretion", because of your own three little words. :eek:

Baldric
-20th September 2010, 16:45
Well I kinda meant for each major championships. No doubt the venue would be problematic, but we should remember that there are certain competitions throughout the year that pretty much all the people in contention would normally be present at. We don't make this complaint about Olympic Zonal qualifiers presumably?
I would also suggest that travel expenses to any UK competition would probably be dwarfed by comparison to going to the international event they were trying to qualify for.

Not saying I have all the answers, I'm trying to fix this for the people who get bumped out of contention due to discretionary selections really. At least this way they would get a chance.

I do appreciate that you are trying to improve things.

There is another, more philosophical point, which is the differing motivations of fencer and NGB.

The fencer wants to be selected. That is a perfectly reasonable goal for the fencer, and often is the FINAL goal - lots of fencers do not think beyond selection.

The NGB doesn't care whether the individual fencer is selected or not. The NGB goal is for the team (whoever is on it) to do as well as possible, when they get to the event.

This might seem a really simple point to make, but it lies behind a lot of the frustrations and anger that build up over selection issues.

randomsabreur
-20th September 2010, 20:02
Discretionary selection might well improve the team on a given day, but what it risks doing is damaging the chances of the team in general long term. The more people who are lost to the sport through resentment over selection issues (or even just the feeling that there is nothing left to aim for) the smaller the pool of fencers, and the smaller the pyramid on which to build future success.

hokers
-20th September 2010, 20:15
my emphasis.

Apart from the obvious logisitical difficulties of running such an event, how do you select the wildcards?

And don't say "selectors discretion", because of your own three little words. :eek:

I'm suggesting a compromise, as I know people will forever raise questions about injuries/illness etc. My ideal solution would be 3-10 from rankings go into the DE, no discretion allowed.

Meg_SF
-21st September 2010, 12:00
If you are injured and can't compete then that is unfortunate and harsh and I sympathise completely.

However, I don't believe that we can make a subjective decision that fencer A is better than fencer B because we perhaps (and I'm sure they have more solid reasons than this) prefer their style; think they have more potential; performed better in a test; they were number 1 last year.

If we do this I believe we are saying that the actual process of competing has no value.

If we are saying that other things are more important than how people perform in competition, and more important than our ranking system, then perhaps we ought to be changing the entire way that we rank people. Is something like the belts awarded in Karate on the cards..?

Things happen in life that are unfair, getting injured can certainly be one of them, but I believe the lesson should be that you go home and get yourself better so that you can compete next season. Perhaps I am wrong, what happens in other sports?

Baldric
-21st September 2010, 13:21
Just to put this in perspective:

This spring EF selected teams for the UKSG, the Senior 5 Nations and the Senior commonwealth.

Each are 6 weapon teams, 4 per team for the first two, and 5 per team for the commonwealths.

So with 2 places per team going straight on ranking, thats 42 first pick spaces potentially subject to discretionary selection.

I am doing this from memory, but I don't think that any 3rd placed fencers lost their place, and only two or three 4th or (5th for commonwealths) placed fencers were not originally selected, although at least one of those did end up being selected because a higher ranked fencer was not available.

Then there were another couple of cases where the first picks were unavailable, and the selector exercised discretion to pick (say) 7th ahead of 6th.

IIRC, there was only one fencer selected who jumped more than one place up the rankings as a result of discretion.

So out of the total of 78 fencers selected for these 3 events, probably 72 or 73 came straight from the rankings, and at least 2 more "discretionary" selections were reversed by unavailability and restored the ranked fencer.

I can see why the individual fencers on the wrong side of the decision get upset, but I don't quite see why this should have an apocalyptic affect on fencers motivation? BY FAR the most effective route to selection is by ranking.

Please note I can only speak for England, but I bet that BF, at least sub-pathway, has similar stats.

Peter Pan
-22nd September 2010, 05:52
J
Please note I can only speak for England, but I bet that BF, at least sub-pathway, has similar stats.

Not quite like that for GB Juniors WF - 75% of "by right" picks were overlooked - and received no communication about that decision

Keith.A.Smith
-22nd September 2010, 10:27
Dear All,

Clare Halsted and the IC discussed the WF non selection issue on Monday of this week. The IC was also told the foil selectors had considered the matter in great detail.

Clare informed the IC that she had written explaining the non selection to the fencers and had no response from the fencers.

Again, I repeat if you have an issue here, do please contact Clare as Chair of the IC.

Keith

devon dumpling
-22nd September 2010, 18:43
Keith thanks for your post. I'm the mum of the number 4 ranked WF (end of season 09/10). To be honest she didn't expect to be selected as she knew this place was at the discretion of the selectors. However she definitely hasn't had an explanation written or otherwise, in fact no contact at all. The only information we have received is via this thread
Now you have said this I will get her to contact Claire.

Peter Pan
-22nd September 2010, 22:03
Dear All,



Clare informed the IC that she had written explaining the non selection to the fencers and had no response from the fencers.


Keith

Keith, this is a little disingenuous - the fencers received no communication. I drew the attention of the two non-selected fencers' parents to the fact that selection had been made; they then contacted Clare. I also did as my daughter could be in contention for the next 3 years and wants to know what you have to do to be selected, now the published criteria are seemingly being ignored.

We all got very similar replies - to paraphrase, the girls aren't good enough, in marked contrast to the boys (there's a surprise! - possibly shows the benefit of sticking with fencers, backing them with TASS, Pathway etc, providing them with good training opportunities..); the one fencer selected was chosen on the basis of her cadet Worlds result.

There's not much you can really say in response to that is there? It appears none of the parents replied, after all, they'd been told that they weren't good enough - So I'm afraid your implication that a) BF contacted the fencers/parents in advance and b) the fencers didn't respond is rather misleading.

So, I tell my daughter, based on this year's policy, even if you're no 1 in the ranking, achieved some of the best CADET international results in recent memory at foreign competitions when you were a cadet (I'm talking about Natasha here), and you beat those who are selected, it's not enough - a committee comprising only one person who could pick you out in a crowd, the rest of whom have never watched you fenced, have decided you're no good.

I know that at least three of those in contention are actively planning their lives around fencing, trying to organise their location, employment or education around the best possible training regime they can put together. There's little incentive to do this when decisions are arrived at in this way and fencers are treated so shoddily.

WestFifeMum
-22nd September 2010, 22:07
Natasha has been told by Clare that they "considered the international Women Foil results and none of them had any point scoring results from Junior World Cups last season (in marked contrast to the MF results)." I felt it was a bit unfair to compare WF with MF considering the funding MF receives.

Clare also suggested that "the Junior European Championships is of an extremely high standard and they do not consider that it is a suitable event for gaining experience."

Tash was also told that "considerable Junior World Cup experience is required and then satisfactory results before moving on to this level of international event."

Alioop
-23rd September 2010, 22:50
So, I tell my daughter, based on this year's policy, even if you're no 1 in the ranking, achieved some of the best CADET international results in recent memory at foreign competitions when you were a cadet (I'm talking about Natasha here), and you beat those who are selected, it's not enough - a committee comprising only one person who could pick you out in a crowd, the rest of whom have never watched you fenced, have decided you're no good.

I know that at least three of those in contention are actively planning their lives around fencing, trying to organise their location, employment or education around the best possible training regime they can put together. There's little incentive to do this when decisions are arrived at in this way and fencers are treated so shoddily.

If this was on facebook I would like it. Its ridiculous Tash wasnt selected, she had amazing cadet results and is now the highest ranked junior, what else could she do? The decison made just shows that no matter what she did, they were never going to take her, which is completely unfair.

Miss_P
-24th September 2010, 12:10
If this was on facebook I would like it. Its ridiculous Tash wasnt selected, she had amazing cadet results and is now the highest ranked junior, what else could she do? The decison made just shows that no matter what she did, they were never going to take her, which is completely unfair.I think the suggestion was that the fencer needed to have had a better result in one of her Junior World Cup events (i.e. score points). How her prior year cadet results were not considered is curious though given another cadet's cadet result is being taken into account.

JulianRose
-24th September 2010, 14:55
the other cadet is still a cadet and did not do many junior events this year as i understand

Red
-24th September 2010, 15:15
One of the MS fencers has had no junior international points...

Ronald Velden
-24th September 2010, 16:42
Team selections are going to be always controversial if you do not have fencers who have achieved qualification criteria.

Historically the Europeans are tougher to perform in than Worlds, because entry is much smaller.

For the record I recall that in 2000 Britain only entered teams in only 2 or 3 of the weapons so that the omission of a team is not new.

One must of course sympathise with any fencer who is ranked in top two of National Rankings, but in this case I think that the International and Weapon
Committees were right.

An examination of the FIE Rankings for 2009/10 season reveals that the top
two fencers still in age group were ranked outside the top 200. Also that the
top ranked fencer referred to in this thread won just 6 out of 31 poole matches and almost certainly none in DE.

The real debate should focus perhaps on why British Women are not competitive in foil at both senior and junior levels. Since Ziemek stopped coaching women noone has made a final tableau at World Cup or Championship and none of our fencers have made top 20 in FIE rankings.

Foilling Around
-24th September 2010, 17:38
If this was on facebook I would like it. Its ridiculous Tash wasnt selected, she had amazing cadet results and is now the highest ranked junior, what else could she do? The decison made just shows that no matter what she did, they were never going to take her, which is completely unfair.

I'm going to regret this, but what the hell. It is simply not true to say that any fencer will not be selected whatever they do. Remember that this same fencer was 5th in the rankings for Belfast and yet was selected above the 4th placed fencer for the team because at the time she was producing really good results.

I've kept out of this up to now because ....... it just seemed sensible to do so, but I will put in some of my observations.

I am not and have not been a junior selector but of course as I do the rankings and have been the junior WF administrator up to this year I have some knowledge.

I am annoyed that the girls have been compared to the boys guven the funding the boys have received. I think more pretinent to the decision was the experience of the girls last year in Odense. The four girls there filled 4 of the bottom 7 places. It was considered that Russia was also likely to only attract the very serious WF nations and so provide a very tough environment.

The four girls in contention this year were, rightly or wrongly not considered to be as strong as last year's cohort. Avoiding a repeat of this was a consideration.

I am not going to use names but one fencer achieved good cadet results, one good Junior result in her first junior year, but none in her second. It was also understood that she was spending the summer in a non-fencing environment. There is a requirement in selection criteria that the fencer is training consistently. I do not know what, if any, communication there was between the fencer and the selectors to clarify this.

One fencer had done no Junior WCs at all through choice, having been selected a number of times and turned it down.

One fencer had not done any Junior WCs through not being in a selection place until the last event of the season which was a last minute arrangement to attempt (successfully) to qualify fencers for the worlds on Baku. She has 2 more Junior years

One fencer had done 3 JWCs this season but had not scored any british ranking points and has 2 more junior years.

The other fencer is still a cadet and getting even better results than the last cohort or the current one in cadet events. However we are constantly being asked to consider LTAD principle of development in judging how fast to develop a fencer.

The above are not value judgements, but i hope statements of relevant facts. The BIG problem is the lack of selection criteia published for the Junior Europeans this year. The document says:

"Junior European Championships 2010 4 fencers per weapon (the event may be moved so selection rules TBC in November 09)"

but of course it never was. This is not acceptable as it means that fencers have nothing against which an appeal can be made. Personally I would appeal on the basis that in the absence of a new document then the previous year's criteria must be deemed to be in force. That criteria does not make any mention of needing certain results, just being in the top 3.

I will be honest that my informal advice (unsolicited by the selectors I might add) was to select a full team or no team as I could not see that anyone had an automatic claim to a place over and above any other and that it was pointless to go all that way and not do the team event. Obviously my advice was not taken.

I am mindful in all of my consideration of these matters that we have to balance two things. 1) The fact that the parents pay for this and so it is their right the decide if the fencer spends a fortune going for 6 poule fights and getting cut against 2) The need to avoid taking "fencing tourists". I really does affect the international perception for British fencers if we contstanly prop up the rankings.

I am also mindful of the fact that my daughter benefitted from a successful appeal to go to Belfast World Championship - and finished as the highest placed Junior WF fencer, narrowly missing out on a L32

Over the past few years, all of the WF fencers who have been to World and European Championships have had at least some International ranking points - that is they have finished in the top 50% of a JWC in the preceeding 12 months

Again communications is the problem. I have said it before and I will say it again. ANYONE who has a reasonable expectation of selection for a championship, and who is not going to be selected, should be telephoned before the decsion is made public and have that decision explained to them.

I have just reread what I have typed, but to be honest I am not sure it takes us forward anywhere. However, having taken all this time to type it, I will press submit anyway.

Ronald Velden
-24th September 2010, 21:39
Foiling Around

The real issue is not just about funding, but the poor support,coaching and training resources, which have been made available to women foilists since
the dark ages.

When you treat your fencers as second class citizens, which is a complaint of
every generation of international women foilist from the Linda Strachan onwards you cannot be surprised that morale is low and performance is poor.

None of the last generation of successful competitive women fencers coached by Ziemek remains in the sport. Some dropped out it is true through injuries,but others because of dissatisfaction with the system.

I am sure that Linda is trying to reddress the situation, but she cannot do it on her own.

Hungry Hippo
-24th September 2010, 22:01
Also that the top ranked fencer referred to in this thread won just 6 out of 31 poole matches and almost certainly none in DE.

But the fencer that has been selected won even less, came lower down the rankings, and had fewer points - so where is the logic in the committees decision.

The top ranked fencer is now a year older, stronger and wiser, therefore much more likely to do well, so it seems absurd to leave her behind.

grizz
-24th September 2010, 22:18
I have to be a bit careful as it is one of my club fencers that is involved in the discussions on this thread.

I would like to say that I feel very sorry for NT, I know if this had happened to my son I would be going completely nuts!!

To my mind there seems to be 2 main issues, communication and support/training (compared to the men). Several girls seem to have made good cadet results in the past but these do not seem to translate into good results at junior and senior

There is not much we can do about the communication but we may be able to help with the support. We are in the process of finalizing a contract with a very well regarded European coach. We also have our own venue 7 days a week. If there is sufficient interest I would be happy to try and organize some training days/weekends for junior and cadet WF. I should be able to do this for a very modest sum and I would think that some local families may be able to offer a bed to those that will have to travel a long way.

We would be interested to hear everybody's thoughts

Jed

Its only an idea but lets see if we can help more girls get good enough results in the future to make sure we do not have this problem in the future.

Jed

smarties
-24th September 2010, 22:41
But the fencer that has been selected won even less, came lower down the rankings, and had fewer points - so where is the logic in the committees decision.

The top ranked fencer is now a year older, stronger and wiser, therefore much more likely to do well, so it seems absurd to leave her behind.

Why are cadet results being compared? NT has not been a cadet for 2 seasons. However, if cadet results are to be compared then the stats using their best 5 results are as follows:

NT - last year cadet
Home events
Top 3 Position x 2
L8 x 2
L16 x 1

Foreign Events
L16 x 2

Junior results last season
Home Events
Top 3 position x 2
L8 x 3

Selected Fencer(1st year cadet)
Home events
Top 3 Position x 5

Foreign Events
L8 x 1
L16 x 1
+Cadet World Champs 15th

Junior results last season
Home Events
Top 3 position x 3
L8 x 1
L16 x 1

For both fencers in the Junior International events the selected fencer only attended 1 comp while NT attend 5 comps and both fencers never made a decent enough result to qualify for ranking points on the GB list.

At the start of this season NT is placed in first position, however after the BSC event where the current selected fencer won the comp hands down is now more than likely to be in the top position.

For the record I am not defending any fencer but just pointing out the facts.

From the above and with age on the younger fencers side for future sucess the commitee made the correct decision. However, if there was no issue in sending 2 fencers with no extra cost to BF (referees etc) then they should have added NT to the selection list anyhow.

LifeBeginsAt58
-24th September 2010, 23:54
This thread has revealed three things to me.
1- The selection process needs to be as transparent as possible.
2- Good communication is paramount and
3- this is an highly emotive subject that, all too quickly, spawns a level of public venting that is less than helpful when youngsters are pitted against each other, off piste! And yes, mea culpa as well but to my regret.
Thanks to the hard work, skill and perseverance of those partially named young athletes who've taken the sport forward. I salute you and accept that you deserve a better explanation than you appear to have had.
Maybe it's time that the adults sorted the issues and just left the youngsters to fight on in their chosen sport?
Is it perhaps time to draw a veil over this thread and sort it out away from public gaze?

cesh_fencing
-25th September 2010, 10:18
Some basic rules should be followed for all weapons/agegroups.

1) The selectors set the qualifying criteria before the start of the selection period and they should be fair for funded and non-funded fencers.

2) They should stick to them and not change them mid season.

3) If events are cancelled they should contact all fencers in the qualification scene to inform them of the change and of any newly selected events.

4) Pathway fencers should not have the god given right to places in teams, if others without funding are higher ranked, and have more success without the extra support, then they have proven their right to make the trip.

5) All fencers should be selected on their results, unless there is a disciplinary case which effects this.

In reality the failure of the setting of a qualifying criteria for this event is appaulling and those involved should be highly embarrassed that they have failed in their duty to the Under 20 fencers in this way.

Clare Halsted
-7th October 2010, 17:31
There are still a few fencers who do not have FIE licences. You cannot be entered without one and the closing date is soon. Please contact the BF office urgently to organise one.
Thankyou
Clare