Star sabre fencer Olha Kharlan and her coach Artem Skorokhod have received their honours as «Athlete of the June 2014» and «Coach of the June 2014» respectively in the Ukraine NOC office in Kyiv on Thursday, July 3th. The awards were given by the Sergey Bubka, Ukraine NOC President. For Kharlan, who is double Olympic medalist and multiple World and European Championships’ medalist, it was a record 7th «Athlete of the Month» award.
Kharlan won her career's 7th and 4th in a row gold medal at the Fencing European championships in Strasbourg, France, in June, helping also her teammates to win bronze medal in the women' sabre team competition.
Sergey Bubka praised Kharlan's achievements at the award ceremony saying, «I would like to thanks Olya for her continuous demonstration of high skills, professionalism, and mental strength which bring her outstanding results. Kharlan is a unique athlete who becomes motivated by every new achievement seeking for the next win. She is a real role model for the young people in Ukraine and all over the world».
Kharlan replied with gratitude for the Ukraine NOC and personally Sergey Bubka for his support for the athletes. She also said, «I take every new recognition like a first one. The 7th award is a new motivation to aim for a victory at the next competitions». Olha also informs that she is in the middle of preparation for the FIE Fencing World Championships which is scheduled for July 15-23 in Kazan, Russia. Kharlan goes to Kazan as a reigning title holder as well as Ukraine women's sabre team.
Bubka also gave credit to Kharlan's coach Artem Skorokhod, one of the youngest fencing coaches in Ukraine who is already acknowledged in the sport as one of most promising experts. Ukraine's national fencing federation president Pavlo Hayday as well as vice president, 1992 Olympic gold medalist Vadym Gutcayt were also honoured with the awards for, as Bubka said, the federation is one of the best organized and most effective national federations
Gutcayt said in return that the success of the National Fencing federation is the result of the outstanding team work. He concluded, «Every win gained by our fencers is our team's win. This team includes athletes, coaches, federation's management, as well as National Olympic Committee and Ministry of Sport and Youth. We appreciate the efforts of the NOC and Sergey Bubka who is always ready to give a helping hand to athletes».