IWAS Wheelchair Fencing announces 2020 calendar
2020 will mark the 65th anniversary of wheelchair fencing as a competitive sport.
International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports (IWAS) Wheelchair Fencing has revealed its 2020 calendar, including regional Championships, World Cups and development competitions, as it prepares to celebrate a milestone year.
2020 will mark the 65th anniversary of wheelchair fencing as a competitive sport. In 1955 at the International Stoke Mandeville Games – the forerunner of the Paralympics – in Aylesbury, Great Britain, sabre was the first weapon to be added to the programme.
Americas and Asian Championships in Brazil and Thailand will highlight the coming 12 months, joining the 2020 European Championships in Great Britain announced earlier in 2019.
Four World Cups in Hungary, Brazil, Poland and Italy will also take place.
All of these competitions offer world ranking points which determine qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, the main highlight of the calendar.
Pal Szekeres, Chair of the IWAS Wheelchair Fencing Executive Committee, said: “Everyone is really excited about what is in store for athletes and fans next year. We have some fantastic locations, offering a great platform for fencers to show the world why the sport has been going from strength-to-strength for 65 years.
“I would like to thank the all competition hosts, whether they are new or have been with us for some time. Everyone’s contributions help us to keep growing and moving forward.”
The calendar begins with a stop in Eger, Hungary, from 13-16 February. The location is a firm fixture on the wheelchair fencing calendar and normally attracts the biggest names.
Just over a month later, Asia’s best athletes will go for regional titles in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, as part of the 2020 IWAS World Games. The Games will feature 12 sports in total and will also include the under 17 and under 23 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing World Championships from 20-28 February.
The World Cup circuit heads to Sao Paulo, Brazil, from 11-14 March and is swiftly followed by the Americas Championships from 15-18 March in the same location.
Wheelchair fencing will then return to its roots from 26-31 May when Europe’s premier athletes gather in Hatfield, Great Britain for the 2020 European Championships.
Warsaw, Poland, rounds-off the World Cup calendar from 3-6 July and will impact the seeding for Tokyo 2020.
Another nod towards 65 years of wheelchair fencing follows in Warsaw from 7-8 July. The first men’s and women’s sabre team and category C foil and epee World Championships will help to build athlete numbers in events not on the Paralympic programme as the sport widens its reach.
Attention then turns to Tokyo 2020 from 26 August – 6 September. A World Cup in Pisa, Italy rounds-off the year from 19-22 November.
|Eger, Hungary||2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing World Cup||13-16 February|
|Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand||2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing Asian Championships and 2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing Under 17 and Under 23 World Championships||20-28 February|
|Sao Paulo, Brazil||2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing World Cup||11-14 March|
|Sao Paulo, Brazil||2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing Americas Championships||15-18 March|
|Hatfield, Great Britain||2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing European Championships||26-31 May|
|Warsaw, Poland||2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing World Cup||3-6 July|
|Warsaw, Poland||2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing Team Sabre World Championships and 2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing Foil and Epee Category C World Championships||7-8 July|
|Pisa, Italy||2020 IWAS Wheelchair Fencing World Cup||19-22 November|
The full competition calendar can be viewed at the IWAS Wheelchair Fencing website.
IWAS Wheelchair Fencing is continuing to grow the numbers of category C fencers, who have the most severe impairments, but cannot currently compete at the Paralympic Games. Men’s and women’s sabre team events are also not contested at the Paralympics.