From our special correspondent in Tokyo,
From our special correspondent in Tokyo,
Let us immediately evacuate this story of the final against Russia.
It did not exist, the proof, it was not a country opposite, but an acronym.
ROC for Russia Olympian Committee, a great scam that we will have to talk about in a future paper.
On the other hand, this semi-final against the Italians, friends,
mamma mia que bella
Biggest thrill of our Games since our inaugural spit at Narita Airport.
Already because we arrived on time, after twelve shuttle changes and a day on the back of a mule.
And then, the side of the scenario.
, they say that in Rome.
Let's set the scene straight away:
On my left, the best team in the history of ladies' foil, Italy.
Olympic winners> Gold in 2012, bronze in 2008, gold in 2000, gold in 1996, gold in 1992, silver in 1988. The rest of the time?
Foil was not on the program in the name of the rolling of arms
“To my right, the French team.
Olympic record> Silver in 1984. The rest of the time?
Walou, skin of cock.
On the track ?
The Squadra azzura which unfolds as planned.
Twelve touches ahead at a time, 25-16 halfway through the assault.
And then Ariana Errigo, of all the battles in 2012, which tears its relay against Ranvier.
Thibus: “I knew Pauline had the keys against her.
It gave us energy.
Then Anita went there with a well-crafted strategy.
She took hits but made no mistake, she was very rigorous.
We put the grain of sand, that allowed us not to let go ”.
More than five keys of delay after the relay of Blaze.
Ranvier put the doubt
In the stands, the energy begins to change sides. We could hear a lot the cries of Garozzo, Olympic vice-champion in individual. Radio silence. On the other hand, the French clan, right next to us, is starting to believe it again. Lefort and Le Péchoux yell louder than in the Auteuil stand: “It's good Popo, you're right. Even Bruno Gare, the president of the Fédé, lets himself be caught up in the ongoing miracle: "The war on the legs, the war on the legs". Ranvier's magic response parade: "We are at home here, we are at home".
Pascal Guichot, the head of the French teams, takes a beak with his Italian counterpart on a touch canceled in the video. 40-37 Italy before the last stint. Yzaora Thibus Trezeguet for the Blue, Ariana Errigo Toldo for Italy, the one who had already allowed Ranvier to close part of the gap. Race Imboden, the Frenchwoman's boyfriend, is more of a coach in the stands.
“Finish it off, let's go! ".
In VF? "Finish them, it's now".
Disappointing individually, Thibus is not the most expressive of the lot.
But when Pauline Ranvier gives him the thread of the body with a look to make you climb Kilimanjaro in flip-flops and the cry that goes with it, we have the hair down to the bottom of the back.
One key, two keys, three keys.
The president of the Fed is in a trance.
44-43 on an Errigo attack.
And finally the deliverance on one last masterful lunge, or something like that.
The four friends find themselves in the middle of the track, as if they were celebrating a golden goal.
Sweet madness in the stands
"I think I've never seen that in female foil," murmurs Lefort, amazed, like us. Brice Guyart, the former Olympic champion now a consultant for France TV, shares a moment with his sister, Astrid, a replacement for his last Olympic Games. His analysis at the beginning: “At the beginning it was complicated for them, then they managed to simplify their fencing little by little. Opposite, they had a lot to lose, mentally we felt the match change ”.
It is hardly clear that the Italians had not seen the color of an individual medal, a first since the death of Julius Caesar. Moreover, poor Errigo is cut up in the country by her former teammate DI Francesco, Olympic champion in London in 2012: “On the last stint, I would have put Alice (Volpi) in her place. Arianna is very strong mentally and physically but she can have significant absences, especially at the Olympics. We saw him in Rio, we saw him this evening ”.
But that, our Blues do not care.
Even if the final step is too high, they celebrate the collective success of this victory out of time.
“On that match, we came out of hell, breathes Ranvier.
We showed that we were able to hit the best team on paper.
We were strong, we never gave up, together.
That's what made the difference in this semi-final, the fact of having always believed in it, we have a solidarity that lasted the whole match and that's what made the moment unique ”.
"We never let go, together"
Almost as unique as seeing Thibus take the silver medals on the podium to put them around the necks of his teammates, as heroines are ennobled.
“I always wanted to take this team as far as impossible.
We started a long way off, but I promised myself after Rio that at the next Olympiad I would give everything for a medal with this team.
It's my way of saying thank you.
I am very proud of them ”.
What time to put it back tomorrow with the sword?
Olympic Games Tokyo 2021: Complicity, substitutes "clutch", and finishers of thunder ... Why French fencing is breaking everything by teams
Olympic Games 2021 - Rowing: "You take me to the end of the world, I take you to Mars"… Tarantola-Bové, money for a real bond
Tokyo Olympics 2021