Regina hosted 74 athletes ranging from ages eight to 80 at the Doug Jackson Memorial fencing tournament.
Although though there are several fencing clubs across the province such as in Melfort, Prince Albert and Saskatoon, Jeremy Lee, president of the Regina Fencing Club said participation took a significant dip when the pandemic started.
“Covid almost saw the complete collapse of all of those clubs,” he said. “We’re talking single digits. Formerly a hundred members down to six or ten.”
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But in recent years, the sport has picked up in popularity according to Lee.
“There’s been a real explosion across the province. People are finally coming out of that post-Covid shell, and going I want to get involved in something,” Lee said.
According to organizers, the Doug Jackson memorial tournament is an opportunity for athletes to increase their national ranks before the national tournament in May.
“They train together and they compete together. When they come here they might bout against each other but there is a lot of team spirit within the clubs and as well team spirit within team sask as well. They do like to cheer each other on,” said John Shurniak, Saskatchewan Fencing Association’s executive director.
“All these smaller tournaments culminate in our national championships, which occur every may long weekend, and this year are happening right here in Saskatchewan, in Saskatoon,” Shurniak said.
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