The coach had decided he would only propose if she lost the match. If she'd advanced to the next round, he would have waited for the right moment.
Maria Belen Pérez Maurice, a fencer representing Argentina, lost 15-12 to Hungary's Anna Marton in the women's saber individual during the Tokyo Olympics, which knocked her out of the competition. But you know what they say: you win some, you lose some.
36-year-old Pérez Maurice may have lost the match but she won in life because she had no idea that her partner of 17 years, who is also her coach, was planning a surprise proposal for her.
Maria Belen Perez Maurice, an Argentine fencer, accepted a marriage proposal at Olympics from her coach Lucas Saucedo. He proposed her in front of television cameras, the second time he had done so. pic.twitter.com/wiMNnGvK99— A (@frustr8ed_Er) July 27, 2021
The fencer was in the middle of her post-match interview when Lucas Guillermo Saucedo made a dramatic gesture and popped the question with a large handwritten note that said "Will you marry me, please?" in Spanish, per CNN. Footage of the proposal shared online shows her turning around to the message, taken aback.
She soon lets out a scream of joy and the coach proceeds to go down on one knee.
Pérez Maurice, who couldn't hold back her tears, nods in agreement, and the two embrace in a hug, exchanging kisses. “They [the interviewer] told me to turn around, and he had the letter. I forgot everything. I was like: ‘Oh my God,’” she said, according to Guardian.
There are more than just Olympic rings at the #TokyoOlympics 💍— #TokyoOlympics (@NBCOlympics) July 27, 2021
Argentine fencer María Belén Pérez Maurice was giving an interview after a match when her fencing coach Lucas Guillermo Saucedo surprised her with a marriage proposal.
(Video courtesy of TYC Sports) pic.twitter.com/hm66ZuzzxH
“We are very happy," the world number 27 fencer said, describing how she feels after the love of her life and partner of nearly two decades asked to marry her. "I said yes, of course," she smiled. According to Reuters, this was the second attempt by the coach and partner to propose, after his first attempt in 2010 was rebuffed, as she believed she was too young to settle down.
Saucedo said he thought about popping the question the night before the match, even though he didn't have a ring.
He'd come to a decision that he would wait to propose if she advanced to the next round, but propose if she lost. On the day of the match, when Pérez Maurice lost. Saucedo didn't have any paper on him and had to get some from a volunteer, who ripped it from a printer.
“I love her, and when she lost the match she got very sad, so maybe this proposal should change her mentality,” he said. “I wrote on the paper in the moment. If she had won, no, I would have waited for the moment.”
The couple met through fencing. Saucedo used to represent Argentina before he got into coaching. The two spend time together despite their busy schedules, and as Pérez Maurice says, "We are very good partners."
"Of course, we have fights, but we enjoy each other’s time. We love each other so much, and we want to spend our lives together," she added. As for their plans on celebrating the big news? "We are going to celebrate in Buenos Aires with a big barbecue.” Sounds like a good plan, doesn't it?
Cover Image Source: Twitter | @NBCOlympics (TyC Sports)