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‘Star Wars’ Inspiration for Masters Games Fencer

‘Star Wars’ Inspiration for Masters Games Fencer And Crime Writer

Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader duelling with light sabres captured crime writer, Vanda Symon’s imagination when she saw ‘Star Wars’ at the age of 13 years old.

“I was inspired and when I saw that my High School was offering fencing I had to have a go and have been fencing ever since. I intend to fence into my 80’s or until I’m too decrepit to hold a sword.”

The 46 yr old Dunedin woman is the organiser of the fencing competition to be held this weekend at the New Zealand Master Games in Dunedin. The irony of a crime writer being attracted to a sport with the twists and turns of fencing doesn’t escape her.

“Yes it’s rather uncanny that I should fancy a sport that’s original purpose was to dispatch people efficiently while not getting killed in the process. Basically I just love playing with swords.”

The author has yet to end a character’s life at the end of a sword but is not ruling the possibility out.

According to Vanda it is a sport that is taxing on both body and mind.

“You need to be very athletic for the lunging and footwork but at the same time you have to be tactical. A three minute round can be mentally exhausting.”

Vanda Symon says that fencing is enjoying the largest number of entrants that it has had at the Games.

“I think part of the reason for this is the growing excitement over New Zealand hosting the Commonwealth Veterans Fencing Competition in November this year in Christchurch. Fencers are seizing the opportunity to compete in their home country and the NZ Masters Games provides the ideal start to an exciting year.”

As for the day when light sabres are used in competition, Vanda thinks that could be a way off, ”Maybe check it out in 3080!”


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