Heidrich & Zumkehr post Swiss Success

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 13, 2016 - Joana Heidrich and Nadine Zumkehr became the first women’s team from Switzerland to advance to the Olympic Beach Volleyball quarter-finals by defeating Madelein Meppelink and Marleen Van Iersel of The Netherlands in three sets here Saturday night at the Rio 2016 “Summer” Games.

Seeded 17th in the competition, Heidrich and Zumkehr scored a 2-1 (19-21, 21-13, 15-10) win in 60 minutes over the sixth-seeded Meppelink and Van Iersel.  The victory was also the Swiss’ first win in six international meetings with Meppelink and Van Iersel.

After the two teams split the first two sets, the deciding set was tied six times before Heidrich and Zumkehr scored six-straight points to take a 12-6 lead.  The Dutch pulled to within four points three times at 8-12, 9-13 and 10-14 before Heidrich and Zumkehr secured the win on the second match point.

The best finish by a Swiss women’s team in the Olympics was a ninth by Zumkehr and Simone Kuhn at the London 2012 Summer Games.  Kuhn, a three-time Beach Olympian, placed 19th twice with Nicole Schnyder in 2004 at Athens and Lea Schwer in 2008 at Beijing.

With the win, Heidrich and Kuhn will challenge top-seeded Talita Antunes and Larissa Franca of Brazil Sunday afternoon with the winner playing the victors from the match between Heather Bansley/Sarah Pavan of Canada and Laura Ludwig/Kira Walkenhorst of Germany.  The Swiss are winless in three international matches with Talita and Larissa while the Canadians hold a 4-1 edge in the series with Ludwig and Walkenhorst.


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