US-based fencer Daena Talavera made her mark in history as the first Filipino to reach the quarterfinals of the World Junior and Cadet Fencing Championships in Cairo, Egypt.

/ 11 April 2021

Talavera has rewritten the record books after ending her Cairo stint placing as the seventh overall in the women’s cadet division, the highest placing for the Phillippines yet in the Junior/Cadet Worlds.

The record was previously held by Samantha Catantan settling for 16th overall as a cadet during the 2019 edition in Poland.

The 16-year old fencer exited the tournament after suffering a loss against 13th seed Maria Cojocari of Moldova, 14-15, during the quarterfinal round.

Before her quarterfinal showdown against Cojocari, Talavera defeated No. 28 Marjona Usmonova of Uzbekistan, 15-11, in the Round-of-32, and 12th seed Malak Hamza of Egypt, 15-7, in the Round-of-16.

She made a solid run in her pool play in the cadets with a 5-0 record claiming the fifth spot en route to the knockout stage of the competition.

In a report from Manila Bulletin, Fencing national team head coach Amat Canlas expressed his and Ormoc City Mayor and Philippine Fencing Association president Richard Gomez congratulatory remarks for Talavera’s historic finish.

“We are super proud of her, it’s truly inspiring that our level is going up,” Canlas said. 

“Ever since I really know Daena has the potential when she was competing seven years ago in the age group, we know she’ll be one of the best fencers that we’ll have,” he added.