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(C) Maxine Esteban

2024 Summer Olympics

Maxine Esteban climbs to world No. 27 in ahead of Paris Olympics

Maxine Esteban received a significant motivational boost for her campaign in the Paris Olympics.

The Filipino-Ivorian fencer climbed to No. 27 in the world ranking, the highest ever achieved by any Philippine-born fencer in the global standings. This came after the International Fencing Federation (FIE) released the latest 2023-2024 postseason world ranking.

“I am happy and excited that my world ranking has again risen, now to 27th. After such a hectic season of 18 Olympic qualifiers, which culminated in my direct qualification for the Paris Olympics, this is indeed one of the biggest rewards for all my hard work,” said Esteban.

“This development will surely add motivation as I prepare for my greatest challenge—competing in the Olympics, which is the dream of every athlete,” added Esteban, who is also the highest-ranked Ivorian in the global standings.

Esteban is one of the 30 direct qualifiers for the women’s foil event—automatic berths granted to athletes based on their world ranking.

“I want to thank my coach Andrea Magro, the Ivorian Fencing Federation, and all my sponsors—Anta, Rebisco Extreme, Akari, and Allstar Fencing—for their continued trust and support,” said the eight-time Philippine champion and multi-World Cup medalist.

“I also want to thank all my Filipino and Ivorian supporters. Thank you for your prayers and love. You are the reason I continue to strive for excellence,” she said. “Lastly, I thank God for this amazing season. Thank you for your protection and guidance—and for the overwhelming abundance of blessings.”

The final pairings for the women’s foil event, which will follow a direct elimination format, will be known after the four lowest-ranked fencers battle for the last two slots in the round of 32.

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The top 16 in the rankings will face the lower 16 in a crossover fashion, and fencers will need at least three wins for a shot at the podium. Esteban is currently in Germany with Magro, who has tutored several gold-winning Olympians before.

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