Di Francesco, Argentina: “How I spent Battle of the Nations 2014”

06 Nov 2020 19:25

HMBIA News presents to you a new She fights for…. rubric. Here we will present stories about HMB girls. What are they fighting for, what goals they set for themselves, why did they chose this tough sport and what results do they strive for! We’ll tell you about champions and newcomers, pioneers and their followers. Each of our heroines is a fighter. Not only on the lists, but also in life. There will be many interesting things!

With an emotional and colorful story by Andy Di Francesco from Argentina, we are opening a new She fights for rubric. It was in 2014 when the HMB World Championship was held in Croatian city of Trogir. One of the most important steps forward in the development of the HMB World Championship Battle of the Nations and the entire HMB sport was made there. It was the year when women`s category were introduced. On the lists within the walls of the Kamerlengo castle the girls-fighters from several countries came  to fight in the Triathlon duels. Among them was the captain of the Argentina national team of that year, Andy Di Francesco. She remembers that year and those battles. The HMBIA News asked her to tell how it was.  

We used to fight, work hard and achieve goals, we learned to sacrifice much to achieve them, and it’s OK. But every time you get an achievement, you cannot believe at first, however silly it may sound”, – confessed Andy.

She perfectly remembers her feelings after the end of her fight with the future Champion of the world and it is so emotional!
I looked at my hands in gauntlets, listened to my breathing, which echoed in my helmet, I tried to breathe, but every breath was a great difficulty, and I tried not to cry. It was the way I felt myself after losing on the lists. Probably, I had had to train more. I even felt ashamed that I had not paid enough efforts when it had been possible and necessary. I finished the third round relying on my luck, because I could hardly breathe. I had paid so much effort but lost in the end.

Someone helped me to take my helmet off, and I sat down exhausted, sweaty and dehydrated, almost unconscious, cursing the heat. I knew that blaming the weather conditions was just an attempt to get an excuse for my defeat… my armor was too heavy… the lies you say, trying to find an excuse… it’s pathetic.

When I finally managed to control my emotions… I found myself as if in a dream. I lifted my eyes from my shaky hands and looked at the time-worn walls of Kamerlengo, felt breeze that filled my lungs with oxygen, saw the sun reflecting in my armor”.

She was too upset by this defeat and for some time could not handle with her emotions. Belief in the reality of what was happening did not come immediately. The pain and resentment receded and she realized something very important!

 “I was wearing armor made by our guys, we travelled across half the world to get to Croatia for the World Championship. I started the fighting process, competing with the future world champion. I finished all the fights, despite the fact that I had never competed with professional fighters, despite the heat, despite the fact that I was wearing armor weighing 25 kg.

 My dream came true! I was there! That was awesome! On June 12, 2014, 6 fighters and 3 squires came to Trogir after numerous quarrels and disputes. We were united by a single clear goal, namely to represent our country with dignity. The National Team of Argentina sounds well, much better than “a bunch of idiots dressed in medieval clothes and hanging around the world, spending their savings and all for the sake of meeting Russians who’ll certainly beat them.” We participated in Battle of the Nations for the second time. And this time our level of preparation was very different from the last year’s one”.

Every next year, this Argentinian girl will show better results. But that first time she fought not so much for a medal, although each participant of the Triathlon was worthy of it, but for all women in HMB! For those who will still enter the lists of the Battle of the Nations in other years. Andy and other female fighters became the pioneers of women’s categories in the Championship and entered their names in the history of HMB.

We will talk about such women who are not afraid to go first and lead others in a new rubric! This is a series of stories about real women and their example for the rest!




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