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September 15, 2011
LCPL Mark Doran
THE ADFA fencing team will contin-
ue a 10-year rivalry when the annual
ADFA fencing tournament is held in
Canberra on October 15.
As a sidelight to the tournament,
ADFA and the Australian National
University (ANU) have a grudge match
going to see which is the best team.
ANU has held the perpetual tro-
phy for the past three years but the
ADFA team, which includes four Air
Force members as well as nine Navy
and seven Army, is hoping to turn that
Leader of the ADFA Fencing Club
OFFCDT James Shelton said even
IF ALL goes to plan, LAC Stephen
Wadwell and his friends hope to organ-
ise the Defence inter-service paintball
championships in Sydney or Canberra
"We are about to submit all our
paperwork to the Australian Defence
Sports Council," he said.
More than 50 people in Air Force,
Army, Navy and APS had already
responded positively to a paintball
page on the Defence intranet so he's
confident there is a groundswell of
Paintball tournaments involve
teams of three, five, seven or even 10
Players, armed with devices called
paintball markers, aim to eliminate
opponents by tagging them with
paint-filled capsules made from food
colouring and gelatin.
The game is played on a small
symmetrical field filled with artificial
terrain (such as inflatable bunkers)
and lasts several minutes.
Players wear brightly coloured jer-
seys and pants to indicate their team.
LAC Wadwell, who works at
HQJOC in Canberra, is one of about
30 ADF players who play in a civil-
ian-based competition, the Super 7
series, which is held in Sydney four
times a year.
That's where the idea for an ADF
championship was hatched late last
If you want more information, contact
LAC Wadwell, stephen.wadwell@
defence.gov.au or LAC Rob Sutterby,
ON TARGET: LAC Stephen
Wadwell at training.
Photo: Sonja Newcombe
to spread wings
The three weapons used in fencing:
Foil: A light and flexible
weapon that relies on outsmarting
your opponent and establishing the
precedent of attack. Hits are scored
with the tip of the weapon and the
target area is the chest and back.
Epee: A slightly firmer blade
making for more aggressive
bouts. Hits are scored with the tip,
although the entire body (including
the face) is considered target area.
Sabre: A cutting weapon that
relies on high speed attacks and
lightning quick defence. Hits are
scored with either the blade or tip
with everything above the waist
considered a target.
though people thought of fencing as
an individual sport there was actually
a lot of teamwork involved.
"You have to rely on your friends
to pick you up on your failing tech-
niques in practice so when you face
other opponents, who aren't going
to be so nice to you, you know how
to counter and improve your attack,"
OFFCDT Shelton said.
"The self-discipline from my
military training definitely applies
to fencing by being able to repeat
techniques and become a master of
Sword fighting as sport has exist-
ed since ancient Egypt and jousting
and tournament combat was a popular
sport in the European Middle Ages.
By the mid-19th century, duelling
was in decline as a means of settling
disputes, partially because victory
could lead to a jail term.
Emphasis shifted to beating the
opponent without necessarily kill-
ing him, and less fatal duelling forms
evolved using the duelling sword, or
epee de terrain, an un-edged variant of
the small sword.
Later duels often ended with crip-
pling thrusts to the arms or legs, and
fewer legal difficulties for the partici-
pants. This is the basis of modern epee
Duelling faded mostly away after
WWI, though duelling still occurs with
some frequency among university fra-
ternities in Germany.
OFFCDT Shelton said fencing
gave the ability to react quickly, ana-
lyse a situation and develop a plan.
"When your opponent attacks, you
can parry, step back, and when you
step back you can see what they are
going to do and react accordingly to
come out on top," he said.
"The grudge match will include
our novice fencers and will give them
an opportunity to represent the acad-
emy with a chance of winning their
bouts without facing the expert fenc-
ers from ANU."
For more information, the ADFA Fencing
Club representative can be contacted at
University challenge for ADFA fencers
TO EPEE OR NOT EPEE
AS AIR Force's lawn bowlers prepare
to defend the Defence title they won
last year, they can draw great confi-
dence from the NSW inter-service
titles in Newcastle on August 2 and 3.
The Australia Services Bowls
Association (ASBA) national cham-
pionships will be held in Brisbane
from September 19 to 23.
NSW is perhaps the state with the
greatest depth of players in Defence,
so Air Force's winning performance
in Newcastle carries some weight.
Air Force beat Army 98-76 and
Navy 93-52, and seven Air Force
players were chosen to represent
NSW at the national championships.
They are CPL Rob Fitzgerald,
AC Zach Gabrielsen, SGT Gerry
Harkins, SGT Rob Hunt, SGT
Michael Petersen, SGT Tony Tapper
and FSGT Shaun Keitel.
Unfortunately, AC Gabrielsen, of
37SQN, looks likely to miss the titles
owing to work commitments but at age
23 (22 at the time of the NSW titles) he
is surely one of the faces of the future
for Air Force.
AC Gabrielsen skipped a team
at Newcastle that lost against Army
19-22 after trailing 8-21 and beat
Navy by four shots. Both opposition
skips have represented Defence in
AC Gabrielsen started play-
ing bowls at 13 at the Gerringong
Bowling Club, going on to win the
club singles and play in the NSW
champion of club champion singles.
He later played number-one pen-
nants for both Bomaderry Bowling
Club and Dapto Citizens Bowling
Club and now plays for Windang
One of the players on AC
Gabrielsen's rink in Newcastle,
SQNLDR Paul Auberson, of 22SQN,
was full of praise for his young skip.
"Why not learn and play while
you have 20/20 vision, a strong sup-
ple back and your original, undam-
aged knees and hips," SQNLDR
Air Force beat Army by half a
point to win last year's national title.
First games in this year's title will
be for the state-versus-state titles.
After the state competition,
Defence selectors will select 16 play-
ers each for the service-versus-service
title. Each service plays each other over
After the tournament, a squad of
30 (16 players and 14 reserves) will
be selected for a tour of South Africa
in April next year.
For more on Defence Lawn Bowls, visit
Back with good form to the scene of last year's triumph
NSW REP: FSGT Shaun Keitel.
CHANGE OF TACTICS: LACW Alana Dickson takes on her opponent during the series against
the New Zealand Defence Force.
Photo: CPL Christopher Dickson
for ADF women
CFN Max Bree
AIR Force players joined with the best of ADF
women's hockey to beat the New Zealand Defence
Force in an Anzac test series at the Sydney Olympic
Park Hockey Centre from August 22 to 26.
After losing the first of four games, the ADF won
the last three to win 3-1.
LACW Alana Dickson, of 34SQN, said the ADF
team developed new tactics for the last three games.
"We really came together after the first game,"
she said. "We played a different system that worked
really well for us and we managed to keep control of
the centre of the field."
LACW Dickson came away from the tournament
impressed with her Kiwi opponents.
"They're lovely girls," she said. "They had some
really strong players; they were a hard team to beat.
"We just managed to get it over them in the end."
In the men's, an under-strength ADF side suffered
a 4-0 whitewash at the hands of the New Zealand
Defence Force team.
CPL Chris Arney, of JEWOSU, said the Kiwis
were very fast.
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