Copyright © 2024 Euromaidanpress.com

The work of Euromaidan Press is supported by the International Renaissance Foundation

When referencing our materials, please include an active hyperlink to the Euromaidan Press material and a maximum 500-character extract of the story. To reprint anything longer, written permission must be acquired from [email protected].

Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Ukrainian fencer disqualified for refusing to shake hands with her defeated Russian rival

Ukrainian fencer Harlan was disqualified from the World Fencing Championships for not “showing respect” (shaking hands) to a Russian fencer Smirnova after defeating her. Smirnova lodged a protest against, staying on the track for over 50 min.
Left: Ukrainian fencer Olga Harlan. Right: Russian fencer Anna Smirnova.
Ukrainian fencer disqualified for refusing to shake hands with her defeated Russian rival

Ukrainian fencer Olga Kharlan was disqualified from the World Fencing Championships in Milan for not “showing respect” to a Russian fencer after defeating her in the game, Suspilne reports.

On 27 July, Kharlan won the match against Russian fencer Anna Smirnova (15:7), who was competing under a neutral flag. After the fight, Smirnova put out her hand, but Kharlan refused and offered to touch sabers instead. Smirnova didn’t respond, and Kharlan left the track.

Russia fencer Smirnova lodged a protest against Kharlan for lack of “showing respect” and stayed on the track for more than 50 minutes after the match.

According to the rules of the International Fencing Federation, the lack of “showing respect” has to be punished by a black card (disqualification from the tournament).

Harlan, defeating the Russian fencer, advanced to the next round and was supposed to meet Bulgarian fencer Yoana Ilieva. However, the fight did not take place. The live scoreboard indicated that Ilieva advanced to the next round automatically.

As per Suspilne, Ukraine will appeal against Olga Harlan’s disqualification from the World Fencing Championships.

“We support Olga Harlan in this situation. I am currently at the World Cup, we are preparing a protest, and we will appeal this decision. After all, the referee who was directly working this match did not give a black card and did not disqualify her. The “undercover games” began later [it was decided later]. This disqualification came after the next opponent [Olga Harlan] had been determined, and a judge was even appointed for the next fight,” President of the Ukrainian Fencing Federation, Mykhaylo Ilyashev, said.

Olga Kharlan won 13 World Cup gold medals, four World Championship gold medals, and two Olympic bronzes. She was born in Mykolaiv, which is now a frequent target of Russian attacks.

You could close this page. Or you could join our community and help us produce more materials like this.  We keep our reporting open and accessible to everyone because we believe in the power of free information. This is why our small, cost-effective team depends on the support of readers like you to bring deliver timely news, quality analysis, and on-the-ground reports about Russia's war against Ukraine and Ukraine's struggle to build a democratic society. A little bit goes a long way: for as little as the cost of one cup of coffee a month, you can help build bridges between Ukraine and the rest of the world, plus become a co-creator and vote for topics we should cover next. Become a patron or see other ways to support. Become a Patron!

To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here

You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter

Please leave your suggestions or corrections here



    Will the West continue to support Ukraine?
    • Know what moves the world.
    • Premium journalism from across Europe.
    • Tailored to your needs, translated into English.
    Special discount
    for Euromaidan Press readers
    Euromaidan Press

    We are an independent media outlet that relies solely on advertising revenue to sustain itself. We do not endorse or promote any products or services for financial gain. Therefore, we kindly ask for your support by disabling your ad blocker. Your assistance helps us continue providing quality content. Thank you!