So, we should probably talk about Kamil Ibragimov. The shining star of new-gen Russian sabre, the 21 year old has been honed by legendary coach Christian Bauer into a model of perfection. He’s pretty much the diametric opposite of the sort of sabre I’m usually into, but he’s pushed it so far it’s reached a kind of terrifying singlarity.
The kid is a stone-cold badass.
His game was out on full display in the final against Yagodka, who had just used a string of awkward but exquisitely timed counterattacks to utterly demolish a jittery Kim Junghwan in the semi.
Ibragimov’s trademark is not speed, not power, not cunning, but a slow, deliberate, calm which exudes menace, and in this match it was exactly what was required.
Then as if holding a guy’s blade with contemptuous ease is not enough, he also appears to be capable of manipulating the very fabric of space time:
Just… it’s that easy, right?
Full match is here, with somewhat more restrained than usual commentary from Andrew Fischl and the US men’s sabre team, who I suspect are just as scared as I am.
There’s a lot more where that came from, even just from the weekend. Stay tuned!