Rubén Limardo Gascón, left, won the men’s individual épée title in Bern ©Getty Images

Olympic gold medallist Rubén Limardo Gascón of Venezuela won the men’s individual épée competition at the International Fencing Federation (FIE) World Cup in Bern, while Russia also tasted team success.

Limardo Gascón, who won gold at the London 2012 Olympics, overcame France’s Alexandre Bardenet 15-7 in the final as the Swiss city staged the first senior men’s FIE World Cup of the season.

The Venezuelan’s hopes of victory almost ended in the semi-finals as he came under pressure against Italy’s Andrea Santarelli before prevailing 10-9.

Bardenet had to overcome two fellow Frenchmen en route to the final, defeating world champion Yannick Borel 15-9 in the quarter-finals before seeing off Olympic champion Romain Cannone in the semi-finals.

The bronze medals went to losing semi-finalists Cannone and Santarelli.

The Russian quartet held their nerve to win a thrilling men's épée team final ©FIE
The Russian quartet held their nerve to win a thrilling men's épée team final ©FIE

There was drama in the men’s épée team final as Russia emerged victorious with a 45-44 triumph against Spain.

Spain, who defeated Hungary 45-42 in the last four, pushed Russia all the way but were denied by a single point in a thrilling final.

Japan, who lost to Russia 45-34 in the semi-finals, claimed the bronze medal after seeing off Hungary by the same scoreline.

A total of 265 épée fencers and 33 teams took part in the competition, which was staged at Bern’s Sporthalle Wankdorf.