The Wits Fencing team remain hopeful the Eastern Cape Open despite training venues being closed due to the #FeesMustFall shutdown.

Eleven fencers from the Wits Fencing club will participate in the Eastern Cape Open at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU), this weekend. The team is hopeful for a strong performance despite the lack of access to training facilities over the last two weeks.

Andrea Cabanac, chairperson of the club told Wits Vuvuzela that their training facilities have been closed for two weeks due to the Fees Must Fall shutdown .

“It will inevitably affect our performance,” said Cabanac ,“ the team has been training 4 times a week for the last two weeks despite having our university closed we are as ready as we can be in light of the circumstances”.

The team has managed to secure off campus facilities to train at but according to Cabanac, “not everyone has been able to make the training as people live far away and some are without transport”.

Cabanac added that “we have to carry the equipment (swords and electrical boxes among other things) for over 13 people over two weeks on hand”.

Cabanac said that due to the national issue of #FeesMustFall, fencing officials at NMMU have voiced concerns about the competition continuing as the campus has also been shut down.

“They [the fencing officials] have not been able to access the university due to protests in trying to organize transport for fencers traveling to and within Port Elizabeth. At the moment nothing is set in stone for us. We have no way of getting around yet because we rely on their promise to provide NMMU shuttles,” said Cabanac.
Cabanac said that the team hopes that “ everyone elevates their current national ranking and enhance their overall experience and skills basis.”