Sports

Oppong Hemeng falls short at African Senior Fencing Championships

Oppong Hemeng secured only one victory in the championship against 16-year-old Anouar Lachiri

Ghana’s lone representative at the 2024 African Senior Fencing Championships, Oppong Hemeng, was unable to advance beyond the pool stage in Casablanca, Morocco.

Competing in the men’s senior foil individual event, the 33-year-old faced a challenging draw in Pool 3, which included Egyptian and eventual bronze medalist Abouelkassem AlaaEldin, Morocco’s Lachiri Anouar, Senegal’s Robin Noe, and Keryhuel Jeremy Fafa from Ivory Coast.

The competition, held from 6–10 June at the Salle Mohamed V Arena, saw Hemeng secure only one victory against 16-year-old Anouar Lachiri while suffering defeats to Abouelkassem, Keryhuel, and Robin. This performance left him unable to progress to the knockout rounds.

In an exclusive interview with asaaseradio.com, Ghana Fencing Association (GFA) President Mohammed Mahadi commended Hemeng’s efforts despite the tough competition.

“Such elite competitions require a lot of input, preparation and a whole lot,” Mahadi said. “I would say it is not easy and the weapon (foil) he is doing as well; it’s not an easy weapon; conventional weapons require consistent training.”

Mahadi also shed light on the reason behind Ghana’s limited representation at the championships.

“We really need to strategize and use the little resources we have for the future of the sports. It’s not like there has been any governmental support for such a continental championship so it has to come from the federations or the individuals so hence we want to focus on a new breed of the national team; that’s how we had only one representative. The new strategy has been focused on the new breed and then get the oldies to back them up.”

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