Paris Olympics

Maxine Esteban ramps up Olympic buildup after African fencing silver

Philip Matel

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Maxine Esteban ramps up Olympic buildup after African fencing silver

MENTORING. Maxine Esteban listens to her fencing coach, Italian Andrea Magro.


Filipino-Ivorian fencer Maxine Esteban climbs in the foil world rankings after picking up a silver in the African Fencing Championships ahead of the Paris Olympics

MANILA, Philippines – After copping a silver in a continental tournament, Filipino-Ivorian Maxine Esteban ramps up further her preparations for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Esteban, who is now representing Ivory Coast as a naturalized player, flew to Austria after the tournament in Morocco, where she will train with the Austrian and Ukrainian national squads, as the two teams prepare for the European Championships.

From there, Esteban will head to Poland for a pre-Olympic training camp, then will head to Paris for another camp with the French and Japanese national teams.

“I think going into different training camps helps us adjust our fencing style depending on the skill sets of different high-level opponents,” Esteban told Rappler. 

“Another thing is getting used to fencing high-level athletes helps me motivate myself into doing better.” 

Esteban picked up a silver recently after a narrow loss to Egyptian Yara Elsharkawy, 9-8, in overtime in the women’s foil final round of the 22nd African Fencing Championships in Casablanca, Morocco.

“I am still grateful for my silver-medal performance in the African Championship,” the 23-year-old said. “It was a wonderful experience and a good pre-Olympic training for me.”

Esteban added that her podium finish also propped up her world rankings, where she’s now No. 35 in foil. 

“This has boosted not just my confidence in the upcoming Summer Games but also my world ranking,” she said.  

In the Olympics, Esteban may cross paths with former Philippine fencing teammate Samantha Catantan, who also qualified for the Paris Games. 

Esteban said it will be “an honor” to face Catantan if they do end up clashing in the sport’s biggest stage in July. – 

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