Mazina, one of Russia's top female epee fencers, has thus far competed in two Olympiads. At the 1996 Atlanta Games, she competed exclusively in the team event, and the Russians defeated Japan in the first round (45-33), and Germany in the quarterfinals (45-37). After losing to the French team in the semifinals (39-45), Mazina and her teammates defeated Hungary in the third-place match (45-44) to capture the bronze medal.
Mazina returned to the Olympics at the 2000 Sydney Games and competed in both the individual and team epee events. She struck Olympic gold in the team epee competition, when Russia defeated Switzerland, 45-35, in the final. In the individual epee competition, Mazina won her first bout against Karina Aznavourian of Russia (15-11), but was eliminated in the third round by Margherita Zalaffi of Italy (13-15).
A member of Moscow Maccabi since 1995 when the club was first formally organized, Mazina began fencing at the age of 12. Although she also enjoys tennis and billiards, fencing is Maria's true love and she said the sport is "exciting and you have to think all the time. After the excitement of the duel, you don't even feel how physically exhausting it has been." One of Russia's top fencers during the 1990s, Mazina participated at the 16th Maccabiah Games in Israel in 2001. When asked about the decision of many athletes to forego the 2001 Games, Mazina said, "I don't think there is a really serious danger...Besides, I have never been to Israel." Maria won the gold medal in the women's epee competition.
Birth and Death Dates:
b. April 18, 1964
Use links below to navigate through the olympics section of Jews In Sports.
Jewish Sports Review November/December 2000 issue (Volume 2, Number 9, Issue 22)
New York Times, July 25, 1996