Happy Friday, everyone! Time for the weekly impossible ref call. This one is a bit of an interesting case, based more on contextual rather than technical elements, and is included as a valuable case study for novice referees.
From the round of 16 at the 2014 World Championships: On the right is Aron Szilagyi, sabre prodigy, greatest fencer of his generation, reigning Olympic Champion, general golden boy, favourite to win the comp. On the left is Sandro Bazadze, who is a decent fencer but has a reputation for drama and aggression towards referees, and a finely-honed repertoire of quasi-legal dirty tricks (see the notorious twerking bout against Kovalev at the 2014 Coupe Acropolis in Athens for more on this: video below). Hey, whatever works, but it’s not the best way to make friends. Szilagyi’s lead has just collapsed from 8/3 to 9/8 and Bazadze seems to have a major upset in his sights. Drama! Screaming! Hilariously overblown hand gestures and excessively theatrical displays of disbelief and exasperation! What’s the correct call here?
Complete match has just been uploaded to our YouTube channel. Hit in question is at 10:05 or so if you want to try it with sound:
For the sake of completeness, here’s the aforementioned Kovalev v Bazadze match in the 32 at the 2014 Couple Acropolis:
Look for Bazadze’s weird little twitch of the hips on the start line, which he uses to draw Kovalev into four (4!) red cards for starting early. Unhappy Kovalev is unhappy.