An international team of marshals worked to identify the bests in our The Fastest Sword Challenge. The team included 9 international certified marshals from the USA, UK, Mexico, Ukraine, Brazil, Argentina, Australia and Russia. The commission was headed by Sergey Myasishchev, head of the HMBIA Marshal Committee. HMBIA News asked marshals from different countries who judged the Challenge to tell us how they worked on the competition:
“Our team consisted of good marshals with extensive experience in many high-profile international events. Most of us know each other well, have been friends and have worked together for many years, so I can note a good level of coordination and complete understanding. We have a close-knit team”, said Marshal Joseph Cadieux from the United States.
Sergey Myasishchev was also pleased with his team:
“The work went smoothly. We had experienced and professional marshals in our team, so problems could not arise. Note that the same team worked on the Women’s Challenge. We worked as follows: each marshal gave his own independent assessment, then they took the arithmetic mean”, said Mr. Myasishchev.
Ana Hernandez from Mexico was also among the judges for the competition. She told us that in the beginning, watching the first videos, it was difficult to adapt:
“When counting points at a tournament, we always move around to look for the best angle to appreciate the combat. Here we only had video to go on and sometimes the angle or the quality of the video was not ideal. The first few videos were the hardest ones, since it meant having to “calibrate” the way we count the points. Roberto Kato Acosta from Argentina, Daniel Felipe from Brazil and I discussed the first few videos together to be sure that we were all on the same page and after that it became easier.”
Joseph Cadieux noted that when evaluating the participants, sometimes it was necessary to revise the video several times to make sure that the blow was correct. Most of the shots were fairly straight forward, he observed, but the ability to revisit and calmly analyze the video as needed helped ensure accuracy. The only surprise, according to Joseph, was the very high level of competition and skill of the participants. “I was glad that HMB athletes from all over the world were participating” .
The team worked smoothly and efficiently. There was little time, but there were a lot of competitors. 100 people applied to participate in the Challenge. However, for a number of reasons, not all videos submitted by the participants were accepted for consideration by the judges.
According to Sergey Myasishchev, there were some technical aspects in the participants’ videos:
“Unfortunately, we haven’t reviewed the videos of all the participants. There were violations – they used the wrong grip of the sword, moved on their feet during strikes. Also, there were no measurements of weapons in the video. And the video was not provided by all the participants who entered”
Andrew Rose, the Marshal from The UK, agrees with Sergey Myasishchev. During his work he met some surprises:
“I think the biggest surprise for me was the people who didn’t meet the criteria of what was needed in the video, particularly the way of striking that a few people used, a weird grip that you would never see in duels”.
However, the judges coped with their work and issued their verdict within the time frame stipulated by the Challenge rules. The winners of The Fastest Sword Challenge among men were already posted in our previous publications.
Ana Hernandez strongly agrees with the head of the Marshal Committee:
“I really enjoyed judging the challenge. I was suffering from tournament abstinence syndrome and this helped me work once more with my brothers in the sport I love. It was great to see some known faces in the sport showing that they keep on training and growing, as well as seeing many newer faces in the sport who took this challenge as an opportunity to train and improve their skills.”
Sergey Myasishchev also noted that such Challenges are useful during the absence of the tournament. They help keep soldiers and marshals in shape. And, in principle, it is nice to see the unity of so many HMB athletes around the world.