French foil players in football sauce.
After their fantastic semi-final against Italy, where they were up to twelve touches behind at mid-term (12-24 in favor of the Transalpines, for a final score of 45-43 in favor of the Blue), some , on the web, did not hesitate to make a parallel with a final of Euro 2000 remained famous for its incredible reversal of situation in the last moments, Zinédine Zidane and company depriving the Boot of a title (2-1 ) while some Italian players had already, according to legend, started to uncork the champagne.
A "remount" at the tip of foil of which Pauline Ranvier said she was particularly proud, instigator of the revolt:
"It's strong to have succeeded against the best team in my opinion on paper."
The full Olympic program
The Olympic medal table
Three new French medals, the tears of Malonga, the Blues of tennis at a standstill ... What to remember this Thursday in Tokyo
But from paper to reality, there was therefore this crazy sarabande to go and win the first medal in French women's foil since the 1984 Los Angeles Games. At the time, it was bronze. But this Thursday, Pauline Ranvier, supported by Ysaora Thibus, Anita Blaze and an Astrid Guyart who entered the final were adorned with silver after a final dominated by Russia (45-34), under the neutral flag in Tokyo. Les Bleues could not decently manage two successes in a row, especially against a collective which had in its ranks the silver and bronze medalists in individual last Sunday, namely Inna Deriglazova and Lara Korobeynikova. Quite the opposite of the French who, for their part, had generally missed out on their competition, with entry eliminations for Ranvier and Blaze, Thibus failing,she, in the round of 16, far from her initial ambition.
But the three young women were able to re-mobilize themselves to restore its brilliance to a female foil which had experienced a long Olympic scarcity and a frustrating 4th place at the London Games (the foil by women's teams was not part of the program in Rio).
Anita Blaze, moreover, did not fail to recall it before flying to Tokyo:
"We have had revenge to take on London for too many years."
It is now done.
"This medal represents many years of work
," Ranvier recalled.
'is a team that has grown, which has evolved, and today we are Olympic champions vice.
I admit that it hurts because we could have the title, but we can be proud of this medal
A long road traveled by a collective which was first able to rely on individual results. In particular the title of vice-world champion of Thibus in 2018, followed by that of Ranvier a year later, a sign of the wealth of this weapon in France. All that was needed was to achieve an Olympic podium:
“When I joined this team, we started from afar
, remembers Thibus.
I then promised myself that I would give my all to get a team medal and here it is, five years later, we all worked together to get up to the level and this podium, we have not stolen it
With now three medals in Tokyo - gold for swordsman Romain Cannone and bronze for sabreuse Manon Brunet - French fencing has fulfilled its objective by equaling Rio's total. He still has three great opportunities to do better, starting this Friday with the men's team épée, Olympic title holder, then Saturday with the sabers and finally Sunday with the foil players led by Enzo Lefort. If Thibus and others were able to go up 12 touches to the Italians in the Olympic semi-final, then anything is possible, including, and above all, the best.