Mansfield’s rising fencing talent Oliver gets call in GB Euro

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Oliver Golanowski of Mansfield – a rising star in the world of fencing.

At only 14 years old, Oliver is already ranked 10th in épée in Great Britain for the U17 category and the European circuit he is about to join is that of the U18s.

He started fencing six years ago and his mother Emilia said: “His interest in fencing was due to pure coincidence.

“We were in a cab in Mansfield and the cab driver was a fencing coach and referred to it as a good hobby.

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“No one else in the family had done it, although I’ve tried it myself since, just for fun.”

She added: “Oliver would love to compete in the Olympics in the future. But his first goal is to be number one in the country.

“He is currently number 10 which is incredible for his age considering the age range goes all the way down to the under-17s – three years above him. He is already number 10 in all of Britain .

“We are very proud and we are also very busy because he trains three to four times a week. We are never home. Then there are tournaments most weekends.

“This month he’s going to London, then Manchester, then a weekend before heading to Belgrade.”

Emilia said she believed Oliver’s rapid progress was due to a combination of raw and natural talent and the work of her trainer Anthony Klenczar at Derbyshire Epee Academy.

“Oliver is a very, very intelligent boy. He’s left-handed and always had a really good imagination, ”she said.

“It’s something you need in this sport because it’s like playing live chess. “You have to read the opponent’s movements and be very strategic all the time.

“But the coach he has is absolutely amazing. There are so many successful fencers out there. He has the top three U20 juniors in the country and quite a few cadets.

“But Oliver is the only one in the East Midlands because people travel from all over the country to the academy because Anthony is such a good coach.”

She added: “Oliver has just won the East Midlands U14 Championship for the second year in a row now. But this is the first time that he has been selected for the European Championship and the tournament circuit, from Belgrade.

The All Saints School student’s national program, Mansfield, sees him travel across the country to collect competition circuit ranking points, which placed him in the top 10 and earned him the move to the European competition.

It starts in Belgrade, Serbia on October 24, followed by Heidenham in Germany the following weekend.

November sees him go to France and Denmark in search of points, January is Slovakia and Greece, then February is Poland.

The final ranking positions allow shooters to be selected for the World Championships and the Olympics.

Oliver has already had a taste of competition abroad when he took part in the Wratislavia Challenge two years ago, the world’s largest children’s fencing event with 2,000 people, but selection was not necessary to participate.

However, with so many trips to come, the family is feeling the pressure and in dire need of sponsorship support.

“He has two international events every month – so he’s going to be very busy,” Emilia said.

“So we really need sponsorship on board to help him. To be honest, it’s going to be incredibly expensive, having two international trips a month. He can’t travel alone either, at 14.

“Finding funds for the two trips in October is a big financial result.

“We also have to finance the equipment which is at the level required for international events and which is therefore very expensive.

“We would always be grateful for help. “

Anyone who could lend a hand is requested to contact Emilia via 07865 673287 or [email protected]

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