Play 19 of the zogho stretto

I’ve been wanting to experiment on this play for a while. It is the 19th play of the zogho stretto and it appears on 30 Recto, bottom-left quadrant.

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Tom Leoni’s translation: “This is the high disarm. I push forward with the handle while squeezing his arms with the left hand until he abandons his weapon. Then, I can give him a good dose of strikes. The student after me shows the opponent’s sword on the ground.”

My theory on this play is that it arises when receiving an overbind from the opponent. The instinct is to yield to the overbind and thus present the pommel forward while advancing to left lead. The disarm occurs when the sword is torqued to the outside while the opponent’s arms are wrapped and his wrists lifted to the inside.

We practiced the entering footwork like this first; start right lead to right lead, actor contains the arms of the feeder, then passes left to the outside of the feeder’s right leg in order to setup an off-balancing motion. We practiced sinking low and making sure we kept the arms contained so we wouldn’t be punched in the face on the way in.

The disarm works best when you flow lightly from the overbind and immediately present the pommel. The left arm drops over both of the opponent’s arms and then lifts his wrists clockwise. Meanwhile you are using the pommel or handle of your sword against the flat of his sword and you rotate the blade outward (clockwise).

If you are unable to close to grapple the wrists, you can transition easily to an elbow push using the same setup (27 Recto:3 / play 15 of the zogho largo).

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