Legendary Hungarian fencer Gyozo Kulcsar dies at 77

AFP-JIJI, Staff Report

Hungarian fencer Gyozo Kulcsar, who captured gold medals in the epee discipline at three Olympic Games, including the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, has died at age 77, the Hungarian Olympic Committee said on Thursday.

Known in Hungary as the “Paganini of the epee” in homage to the Italian violin virtuoso, Kulcsar won an individual gold at the Mexico City Games in 1968, and team golds at Tokyo in 1964, Mexico in 1968 and Munich in 1972.

He also claimed bronze medals in 1972 and at the Montreal Games in 1976, as well as three world championship golds (1970, 1971 and 1978).

In a February 1965 article in The New York Times, well-known writer Robert Lipsyte reported on Kulcsar’s triumph in the epee competition at the New York Athletic Club’s international fencing tournament.

“With a quick, supple wrist and lightning countermoves, Kulcsar was never seriously pressed in his four final bouts,” Lipsyte wrote. “His blade flicking out like a snake’s tongue, he took his targets where they presented themselves.”

After Kulcsar retired from competition, he trained several Hungarian fencers to Olympic medals, including Emese Szasz, who won epee gold at the 2016 Rio Games.