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MatFink
-13th June 2012, 22:26
I will begin by saying that I many ways I hope that this situation does not occur. Mainly because the fencer in question has been a real Hall of Fame British fencer for over 10 years and I would hate for them personally to miss out because of injury.

That having been said I would be curious to know what would happen if Louise Bond-Williams fails her fitness test. This would release one last wildcard into the mix and very close to the games. For some this will be a logical selection either Jo Jo or maybe Willis, but it does occur to me that the original selections create a catch 22 position.

If fact if taken to its conclusion this situation would create a lose, lose even worse situation for BF and the Performance team. Let me explain:

The rationale behind the original selection was in two phases: medal potential for 2012, potential for 2016.
Two foil teams have been selected so we can ignore all fencers in this weapon.

The selection of Williams, Honeybone, and Lawrence on the basis of their 2016 potential sends a very specific message about those more experienced and in some cases higher ranked athletes who were not selected. It sends a message that in the professional opinion of the PM and the Performance team these no selected athletes do not a) have medal potential for 2012 and b) they have not got potential for 2016.

In the event that no one wins a medal at the European championships (which would be really really embaressing for BF if that person is not already a selected Olympian) then it must be accepted that this position has not changed.

On this basis the remaining place could not be awarded to: Hutchinson, Willis, O'Connell, or Nicol without the Performance Team admitting that they were wrong and effective had done a bad job first time round. This opens up an interesting situation where we are looking at fencers from epee and sabre who have potential for 2016.

Names like Marsh, Hudson, Crutchett (younger), Miller, Kempe, and others come into the frame.

Of these 'potentials' it is my feeling that one stands out, and is almost hard not to select given the selection of Williams. During the Olympic period KK has had comparable and actually better results than the other WS fencers (except JoJo) at least since she made the move to Boston. The results have dropped off a little since the cut off date, but this is to be expected as the objective has moved into the future and so it is just good periodisation by the coach to change the training from competition phase to prep or development.

It is a big statement of your commitment to move to a different country fulltime to train, and it is my understanding that either way she will be training fulltime for 2016. So far I don't know of any other athletes selected or otherwise who have made this commitment.

I on a personal level would love to see Marsh or Hudson given a shot, but I accept that this is a little unrealistic. Alex Crutchett is our senior national champion and has demonstrated his parity with Honeybone on occasions even if he does lack the consistancy of our brightest rising star (yes I think James is superb, if you don't like that I don't care). Aliya and Curtis have been awesome final year juniors so they could also be considered.

If I am honest I don't really have enough fine detail on all of the candidates to come to a definitive decisio, but as I started the thread I will take a punt.

In the sad event a final wildcard comes free: My heart would send Willis, My head would send Hutchinson, and My decision based on the selection procedure and the way it has been interpreted would be Katherine Kempe.

As I said this situation would put the selectors in a damned if you do, damned if you don't scenario where either they make another unpopular decision and remain consistant, or select one the fencers in form and who has public support and loose all credibility that they had left.


What do you think: three choices each: Head, Heart, and BF policy

You may just surprise yourselves and everyone else.

Matt

hokers
-13th June 2012, 22:43
That having been said I would be curious to know what would happen if Louise Bond-Williams fails her fitness test. This would release one last wildcard into the mix and very close to the games. For some this will be a logical selection either Jo Jo or maybe Willis, but it does occur to me that the original selections create a catch 22 position.

Matt

Not playing, but if it should happen there's no reason that BF have to restrict themselves to results before the 9th May cutoff. Knowing what we know now, there really is only one selection based on current form.

Jon Willis
-13th June 2012, 22:47
Matt, you have posted some great stuff recently. You are an asset to British Fencing but be careful about starting too many debates. Sometimes all this is tough reading for athletes who gave up everything for this and had the rules changes 5 years down the line.

If the situation arises, send JoJo.

*Thread Closed*

jimcrawfurd
-13th June 2012, 22:52
Matt,
One technical issue - I don't know the exact arrangements for replacing an injured fencer after names have been submitted, but it is possible that the competition organisation may require the replacement to be at the same weapon as the fencer withdrawn.

One "discretionary" issue - I dispute your facts about KK's performance data - I don't know what you define as the "Olympic period" and I am unaware of what date she moved to Boston, but looking at rolling FIE rankings for current season:

JH 45 points
CN 28
SW 23
LBW 18
KK 7 (3 x L64, 5 x L128)

I can't see the evidence for your statement that " During the Olympic period KK has had comparable and actually better results than the other WS fencers (except JoJo)"

On the age front, KK is only 2 and a half yrs younger than JoJo and Chrystall, so unless anyone can provide evidence that there is a dramatic drop in performance among women's sabreuses between the ages of 27.5 and 30 (as they will be in 2016), then the "future prospect" argument doesn't work for me.

Personally I think it's a no-brainer - if anyone is unable to compete due to injury/illness then JoJo is the obvious replacement - highest current ranking of any non-selected fencer, genuine outside hope for a "medal zone" result, hitting form at exactly the right time, and best of all for the PM/selectors, 2 of her 3 best results have come AFTER the original selection process, so gives them a perfect defence against any accusations of making U-turns etc.

Jim

MatFink
-13th June 2012, 22:58
Matt, you have posted some great stuff recently. You are an asset to British Fencing but be careful about starting too many debates. Sometimes all this is tough reading for athletes who gave up everything for this and had the rules changes 5 years down the line.

If the situation arises, send JoJo.

*Thread Closed*

The reason I seperated head and heart is if I had the option I would have sent both you and JoJo as stated on another thread. Given her recent results JoJo got my logical nod.

On a personal level it would give me great joy if you did what you have done so many times and go out on a high in Italy. I wouldn't lose to much sleep over the media fiasco it would create. The same goes for JoJo as well to be honest, but I know her far less well.

I will remake my comment on facebook: Maybe you hit a home run and just didn't know it.

You broke through the glass ceiling for British Epeeists and are still the only one to have one a world cup in the modern DE format. All British Epeeists of the future owe you a debt for this, because you have proved that it could be done.

I hope that was a little less tough to read. Good luck in Italy.

Matt

MatFink
-13th June 2012, 23:07
I can't see the evidence for your statement that " During the Olympic period KK has had comparable and actually better results than the other WS fencers (except JoJo)"



Hi Jim.

I have looked bit deepr and must defer to you. I was at the England Cup this year where KK delivered her second L64 in a row after moving to Boston, and looked really inform. I was told at the time, and this is correct, that her results since moving to Boston had been comparable. It is clear that since London she has not been a strong, but as she neither put herself forward or appealled perhaps she took the view that she was now working to 2016.

Either way the defining points on my decison for her were a) unlike Hutchinson and Nicol she has not already been rejected under the criteria, and b) she has completely uprooted her life and already made the commitment to train for 2016. In my philosophy attitude and hard work normally hold sway over other factors.

Obviously JoJo is the obvious call, but for many she was the obvious call first time round and there would be some serious egg of faces. This thread was not meant to be aa repeat of the excellent one you started, but rather an opportunity to compar and contrast the best of the rest, say who we would have personally liked to have seen selected, and also take a guess at what BF might do should the situation occur.

D'Artignan
-14th June 2012, 00:17
My feeling is that BF wouldn't want the egg on their face if Jonny or Jo did make it, so someone like Mary Cohen would be my guess. Still relatively young, and her omission caused less outrage, so less of a PR disaster for BF (not that they seem to mind these... :whistle:) combined with a good recent result in Rio, she would seem to fit the bill. Not that others don't, mind you ;)

Ronald Velden
-14th June 2012, 00:34
My understanding is that the BFA will only be able to replace a fencer with like for like that means in Mens and
Womens Sabre plus Team events.

I am afraid that they could not replace an injured fencer with Jon Willis as noone has been selected in Mens Epee and I don't think that any women's epeeist met the BFA/BOA minimum criteria apart from Corinne Lawrence.