Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 10, 2016 - The “tall” and “short” of Canadian women’s Beach Volleyball remained unbeaten in Rio 2016 Olympic competition here early Wednesday morning as Heather Bansley and Sarah Pavan posted a two-set win over Joana Heidrich and Nadine Zumkehr of Switzerland to seize control of Pool E.
In a pool that also features pairs from Germany and The Netherlands, the 196 cm (6‘5”) Pavan and the 170 cm (5.’7”) Bansley scored a 2-0 (21-18, 21-18) win in 49 minutes over Heidrich and Zumkehr to improve their head-to-head meetings with the Swiss to 3-1.
In addition to the height note on the Canadian pair, the two players were recognized by FIVB after the 2015 season with Pavan being the international circuit’s top blocker and Bansley the best defender.
The Canadians trailed only twice in the first set and built leads of 15-8 and 16-9 before the Swiss fought back to make it close at 19-17 and 20-18. In the second set, the Swiss took a medical timeout at 4-3 due to Heidrich twisting her right knee. From there, the Swiss could never tie the match in their effort to post an upset.
The two teams end pool play Thursday with Bansley and Pavan meeting Karla Borger and Britta Buthe from Germany while the Swiss confront Jantine van der Vlist and Sophie van Gestel of The Netherlands. The Canadian/German series is tied 2-2 with Heidrich/Zumkehr winning both of their matches with the Dutch.