SEOUL – Eli Dershwitz of the Harvard men's fencing team has qualified for the 2016 Olympics in Rio after a solid gold medal performance at the Seoul Grand Prix on Saturday. This event marked his first-ever Grand Prix gold medal. Dershwitz will compete for the U.S. squad.
Dershwitz is the seventh Harvard fencer to compete in the Olympics, with the last being Emily Cross '09 and Noam Mills '12 who both competed in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Cross was on Team USA, while Mills competed for Israel.
The Sherborn, Massachusetts native will join U.S. teammate Daryl Homer in the individual men's saber competition. Both qualified by being in the top 14 of the FIE Adjusted Official Ranking list.
Dershwitz's claimed gold after defeating the 2014 world silver medalist Bongil Gu of Korea followed by the 2014 world champion Nikolay Kovalev from Russia in the semifinals. In the finals, Dershwitz faced Moktaba Abedini who was the first Olympic fencer for Iran in 2012.
The 2016 Rio Olympics will take place from August 5-21 with the fencing competitions beginning August 6 and ending on August 14.