A 15-year-OLD fencing star from Bury will represent Great Britain at the European Cadet Championships in Israel next month, and the World Championships in Bulgaria later this year.
Daniel Kiss, who attends Bury Grammar School Boys, is currently ranked number one in the under-17 age category and faced strong competition from 179 fencers in his latest international Cadet Circuit event in Bratislava.
Taking 17th place overall, Daniel, pictured below, was ranked as the UK’s top athlete at the event on January 11, and won the first round event.
The talented fencer, who was invited to train with the British senior national squad in London earlier this month, started fencing at the age of eight – kicking off his career with some good results in the under-11 Leon Paul Junior Series.
He has achieved a number of successes in a short space of time – winning the British Championships twice, achieving second and third place at the English Championships and sealing victory in the Leon Paul Junior Series four times in six years.
Daniel, who competed in his first under-17 international competition last September, took third place out of 120 fencers. He surprised the field with a great performance before finally being defeated by the current European champion.
The youngster was ranked the most successful GB cadet at a circuit event in France in December, taking 30th position out of the 240 competing, while his team finished in seventh place overall. He also won the gold and silver prizes at the Wrexham Open, winning the best under-18 award twice.
He has been awarded an Olympic silver passport, which means he will receive sponsorship from Adidas, Omega and Holiday Inn.
Daniel, who last year became the youngest fencer to be selected for the British Fencing Talent Programme, is ranked 20th in the European Cadet Men Foil rankings. Joanna Cook, head of Pathway Development, said: “Daniel is an exceptional fencer with some real talent, helped by great genetics from his parents.
“For a 15-year-old he has a great understanding of the sport, is dedicated to training and working holistically to develop himself.
“He is part of our World Class Talent Programme which aims to foster talented fencers in this country, providing them with an environment to excel and become the next generation of world beaters.
“If Daniel continues progressing and taking on board everything he learns then I am sure he will be one to watch for the future.”
Daniel is the son of Robert Kiss, the former Hungarian Olympian and head coach of Salle Kiss Fencing Club in Bury.
Robert and Daniel’s mother, Natalia Gyuricska, who is also a fencing coach, established the club 15 years ago and it forms part of the North West Fencing Association, which runs a series of junior competitions across the region.
The club runs evening classes for children and adults, and a special fitness programme for youngsters looking to improve co-ordination and speed.
Training sessions take place every Monday and Wednesday evening and Friday afternoon at the Bury Grammar Senior Boys sports hall.
Salle Kiss also runs training weekends and camps. For further details visit www.sallekiss.org.uk