British Fencing to carry out "robust" review of London 2012 performance
Friday, 31 August 2012
August 31 - A "robust" review of London 2012 has been demanded by British Fencing chairman David Teasdale following the resignation of chief executive Piers Martin.
Britain's team of ten fencers disappointed as none of them advanced beyond the last 32 in the individual event and the best performance in the team was the sixth place in the men's team foil.
It followed the decision by Martin to resign on the eve of the Games after four years in the role.
He has now been replaced on an interim basis by Peter King, the former highly-respected chief executive of British Cycling, who will oversee the review.
"When we announced last year the '3G' strategy – Green, Grow, Gold - we said the Board would reviews the progress, as appropriate, including a performance review by the Board after the 2012 Olympic Games," said Teasdale.
"On behalf of the Board, let me set out how this key task will now be conducted.
"The present Board is clear that this requires a robust, thorough but speedy review, with necessary decisions on the way forward by the new Board when in place in October.
"Then, the new Board will also be advised by the interim CEO Peter King, who has great experience of the journey from planning to podium."
The failure to win a medal at London 2012 means a British fencer has not been on the Olympic podium since Tokyo in 1964 when Henry Hoskyns won a silver medal in the épée.
Whether that drought is ended at Rio in 2016 will depend on the outcome of the review, Teasdale admitted.
"Much will depend of course on the resources available to us from UK Sport," he said.
"Our review will form part of the 2013-17 funding discussions with UK Sport in October/November."
There is also pressure on Alex Newton, British Fencing's performance manager, to explain why the team underperformed in London.
The build-up was also marred by a number of selection rows.
"As a first step, the Board expects Alex Newton and her coaches to provide their internal report on the results and lessons of the programme over the last four years," said Teasdale.
"They and the Board will get independent advice from performance experts.
"The Board is considering the right people - in consultation with UK Sport - and will announce the names soon."
Teasdale hopes to appoint a new chief executive after the review is completed to be in place by April 2013.
"We all remain committed to developing world class fencers in these islands," he said.
"We have learned much from the last four years - we must now review, reassess, and seek the right next steps to raise resources and standards, to get on the gold trail."
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