New Delhi, June 20: Olympian Bhavani Devi stunned reigning world champion and world No. 1 Misaki Emura of Japan to win India’s
first-ever medal, a bronze, in the women’s sabre event at the Asian Fencing Championships 2023 in Wuxi, China on Monday.
World No 49 Bhavani Devi, surprised Misaki Emura 15-10 in the quarter-finals of the women’s sabre event. The win
confirmed the Indian fencer with a historic medal. It was also Bhavani Devi’s first win over the Japanese fencer in four meetings.
At the Asian Fencing Championships, the losing semi-finalists win bronze medals while the winners compete in the gold medal playoff.
The 29-year-old Indian settled for bronze after suffering an agonizing 15-14 loss to Uzbekistan’s world No. 79 Zaynab Dayibekova in the
Earlier, Bhavani Devi had received a bye in the round of 64. She got the better of world No. 95 Dospay Karina of Kazakhstan 15-13., She
upset world No. 40 and third seed Seri Ozaki of Japan 15-11 in the pre-quarter-finals.
Jagmeet Kaur, Rishika Khajuria and Josna Christy - the other three Indian fencers competing in the women’s sabre - failed .
Bhavani Devi, a two-time Commonwealth champion, previously had two Asian medals to her name but both came at the U23 level. She won an
individual silver medal in 2014 and a bronze in 2015.
Bhavani Devi competed at Tokyo 2020 and is the only fencer to represent India at the Olympic Games.
Zaynab Dayibekova, an Olympian, won the gold with a 15-9 win over Korea’s world No. 28 Jisu Yoon.
Besides sabre team and individual events, the Asian Fencing Championships also include competition for foil and epee disciplines.
The continental championships will conclude today June 20.