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Thursday, July 26, 2012

OLYMPIC SABRE: MARIEL VERSUS SADA

There are 530 (or 529--for the first time more women than men) USA olympic members.  One is selected by them to carry the American flag in the Opening Ceremonies.  Chosen was a 5'8", 168 pound, female.  Hmm...at my heaviest three years ago, I was that height and weight.  You never heard of her, for she is a fencer.  She won the gold in 2004 mostly because a Nigerian fencer dropped out and she was next on the ratings list.  To the astonishment of many, she got the gold in women's sabre.  In Beijing 2008, she was not favored, but got the gold again.  This year she is the expected to hit gold.  Her name is Mariel Zagunis.

However, she should be worried about her teamate, Sada Jacobson, graduate of Yale who earned a law degree from the University of Michigan, and won the bronze in 2004 and silver in 2008 (losing to Zagunis).  Sara tells the story:

When the three medal winners finished their group hug, a gentleman in the front row, moved by the show of emotion, reached into his pocket and produce a neatly folded white handkerchief, handing it down to Jacobson. Her silver medal still hanging around her neck by a bright red ribbon, she laughed, dabbed her eyes and handed it back. The man laughed with her and dabbed his own eyes. Moments later Jacobson thought, "Maybe I should have kept it." But by then the hanky, full of her tears, was back in the pocket of former president George H.W. Bush.[20]  The United States swept the event, with Zagunis winning the gold, Jacobson the silver, and Rebecca Ward the bronze.[20]


Now that you will be watching fencing, click on it to find out when.

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