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Last Updated: Tuesday, 17 August, 2004, 18:32 GMT 19:32 UK
Zagunis takes gold
Mariel Zagunis waves the American flag
Zagunis celebrates her victory over Tan Xue
Mariel Zagunis won the United States its first fencing gold medal in 100 years after defeating China's Tan Xue in the women's sabre finals on Tuesday.

Zagunis, 19, recorded a 15-9 victory over Tan while compatriot Sada Jacobson beat Romania's Catalina Gheorghitoaia 15-7 for the bronze medal.

Marcel Fischer of Switzerland won gold in the men's individual epee after defeating China's Wang Lei 15-9.

Russia's Pavel Kolobkov took bronze after beating France's Eric Boisse.

Zagunis, 19, who only made it to the Games as the third-ranked American when the Nigerian Olympic Committee declined to send Jacqueline Esimaye, raced to an 8-2 lead.

In spite of a spirited comeback that took Tan to within three points, she held on to win comfortably.

The last US fencing gold was won in the single sticks in St Louis in 1904 by Albertson van der Post -- the only time that that event has been held at the Olympics.





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