Dueling for SA

2015-07-07 06:01
Alexander Collings (18) will represent South Africa at the Commonwealth Fencing Championships starting in Cape Town this week.

tiyese jeranji

Alexander Collings (18) will represent South Africa at the Commonwealth Fencing Championships starting in Cape Town this week. PHOTO: tiyese jeranji

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Alexander Collings (18) from Claremont saw the fencing Olympics on TV while in Grade 4 and it caught his heart.

He says what he saw then activated something in him. So much so that he wanted to do it as well. That’s how his incredible journey of learning fencing started. For the past 10 years he has been nothing but the best in being a fencer.

Foilist Collings has won medals in competitions held in Egypt and Algeria.

He is glad that he decided to start fencing as he is now reaping the rewards.

“I’m happy that when I saw it on TV I was so determined to try it out. It makes me so happy that I have achieved so much at a young age and there is still more to accomplish,” says Collings.

He is currently the third highest ranked u.20 men’s foilist in South Africa. He has already competed in two world championships and two junior African championships.

He is looking forward to the Commonwealth Fencing Junior Championships and the inaugural Commonwealth Fencing Cadet Championships that will take place in Cape Town this year.

This is the first time to have these Commonwealth competitions on African soil. Collings can’t hide his excitement that he is part of the three-strong men’s team that will be representing South Africa.

“It’s the first tournament and I’m glad that I will be able to leave my mark. I enjoy it so much and I’m looking forward to meeting my friends from other countries and to represent this country well.

“We have a pretty strong team and we are really looking forward to the games,” he says.

UCT sports centreThe Commonwealth Fencing Junior Championships (for fencers under the age of 20) and the inaugural Commonwealth Fencing Cadet Championships (for fencers under 17) will draw participants from 14 countries. It is taking place at the University of Cape Town’s sports centre from Saturday to Friday next week.

Patrick Collings, chairperson of Fencing Western Cape, says he is happy that fencing is gaining momentum as a sport.

“People know about fencing and when it’s available people get hooked on it. The team is very excited but with the older ones it’s more about performance. They have been to a lot of competitions and they have been working hard, so this time it’s about how they perform. This will be a good gauge of how fencing is doing in South Africa and we believe they will represent us well,” he says

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