Olympic silver medallist Jeļena Rubļevska of Latvia and Incheon 2014 Asian Games champion Guo Jianli of China topped the women’s and men’s fencing rounds respectively on the opening day of the International Modern Pentathlon Union (UIPM) World Cup Final in Sarasota in the United States.
Rubļevska, second in the 2004 Olympics in Athens, finished at the summit of the standings with a score of 256 points following 26 victories and nine defeats.
The Latvian has a six-point lead over Germany’s Lena Schöneborn, gold medallist at Beijing 2008 and the reigning world champion, who sits in second on 250.
Schöneborn achieved 25 victories but suffered 10 losses.
Ieva Serapinaite of Lithuania was third as she picked up 244 points with 24 wins and 11 defeats.
In the men’s competition, Guo was in fine form throughout the afternoon session and ended the day on 244 points having claimed 24 wins and 11 losses.
Christian Zillekens continued the good performances from the German contingent in Sarasota as he was second after his record of 22 wins and 13 defeats handed him 232 points.
Egypt’s Amro El Geziry, silver medallist at the 2014 World Championships, jointly occupied the final spot in the top three as he managed 21 successes and 14 losses to clinch 226 points.
Double world champion and compatriot Yasser Hefny finished the day with the same win-loss record.
The event in the American city, located in Florida, brings the UIPM World Cup season to an end and offers competitors the chance to secure vital ranking points ahead of this year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The competition is due to continue tomorrow with the women’s final, before the men’s final takes place on Saturday (May 8).
The mixed relay competition will then conclude the event the following day.
“Many times in recent years we have staged successful events here in the Florida sunshine, and our pentathletes have come to regard this as one of the world’s outstanding venues,” UIPM President Klaus Schormann said.
“This weekend the very best athletes will be excited to return here to compete.
“This World Cup Final is, with the exception of UIPM World Championships and Olympic Games, the highlight of any modern pentathlon calendar and it carries even more importance in this Olympic year.”