YOU never now what you might get at a council sports taster.

Had you asked Kareem Cheriton after he picked up a fencing foil at a Kensington & Chelsea community session in 2003 at the age of nine, whether he imagined himself winning team silver in the 2010 European Championships - the answer would probably have been 'no'.

But that is exactly what happened to the fencer in the Athens Olympic Stadium earlier this month in the U17 category, after steady progress following the day Cheriton, then at Fox School in Notting Hill, wanted to play Robin Hood. His raw talent was obvious to K&C's fencing coach, Vladimir Meskov, who went on to support the youngster's development into an elite fencer.

Cheriton also benefited from the coaching of Mark Nelson Griffiths, head of sport at Sussex House School in Chelsea, which provides the bedrock for K&C's team each year at the London Youth Games.

In Athens, GB and Cheriton beat France, Ukraine and Italy before losing to Russia 45-34 in the final.

Councillor Shireen Ritchie, K&C cabinet member for family and children's services, said: "It gives me great pleasure to think Kareem's talent was unearthed at one of the sports sessions we run for young people and I would encourage more youngsters to come along and try their hand at any of the sports we offer.

"You never know where your talent might take you."