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GB 'training team' score shock victory

Richard Kruse
Richard Kruse of Great Britain celebrates after defeating Alessio Foconi to win the men's team foil final. David Ramos/Getty Images
Unfancied Brits defeat Italy team with two individual medallists in their ranks

British fencer Richard Kruse, who claimed that Great Britain were only using the European Games as training for next month's world championships, pulled off one of the biggest shocks of the Baku 2015 Fencing competition when he steered his country to victory over favourites Italy in the men's team foil final.

The 31-year-old Kruse went into the decisive last leg against individual foil champion Alessio Foconi just 40-38 ahead. But the Briton fenced superby to clinch a 45-41 victory and take Great Britain's only Fencing medal of Baku 2015.

This was an astonishing performance from the unfancied British team of Kruse, Marcus Mepstead, Benjamin Peggs and Alex Tofalides.

Italy have dominated the Baku fencing, winning more than a quarter of the 42 medals on offer, including three golds. In addition to Foconi, their men's foil team included 18-year-old individual bronze medallist Francesco Ingargiola.

Kruse, who went out in the early rounds of the individual event, had told reporters the team were in Baku because "it is better training with these guys than what we get in London".

The world championships take place in Russia in July.

But after the victory, the Briton said: "I know on paper that they are a strong team. But I knew we were capable of beating Italy."

Russia took the bronze medal after a 45-33 defeat of France.


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    GB 'training team' score shock victory

    Unfancied Brits defeat Italy team with two individual medallists in their ranks
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