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Swiss add to Olympic medal tally

Triathlete Sven Riederer was an unexpected medal winner Keystone

Switzerland have increased their medal tally at the Athens Olympics to five, after winning bronze in the men's triathlon.

It comes a day after Swiss athletes garnered silver and bronze medals in track cycling and beach volleyball, and follows earlier victories by fencer Marcel Fischer and cyclist Karin Thürig.

Sven Riederer came in behind New Zealand’s Hamish Carter and Bevan Docherty to take bronze in the triathlon – a swimming, cycling and running event.

The 23-year-old Riederer had not been tipped to win a medal, with Swiss hopes riding on his team colleague Olivier Marceau.

“I didn’t think I could win a medal,” Riederer admitted after the event, explaining that his aim had been “to stick close to the two New Zealanders right to the very end”.


Riederer’s bronze means Switzerland has achieved the minimum five medals it set out to win.

On Thursday, cycling pair Franco Marvulli and Bruno Risi took bronze in the madison event – a 200-lap team endurance race with ten intermediate sprints. Points are handed out according to position.

After a slow start, the duo began to make their presence felt at the halfway point and won the last three sprints to climb on to the podium. The final sprint was decisive for positions two and three, with Marvulli ensuring the 2003 world champions’ silver finish.

Risi, who was trying for the third time to win an Olympic medal, nearly didn’t make it on to the track after crashing during training on Tuesday. He required overnight medical treatment but didn’t seem bothered by the pulled muscles he was pushing during the race.

Volleyball bronze

Just one hour after the two Swiss cyclists took silver, the Swiss beach volleyball duo of Patrick Heuscher and Stefan Kobel earned themselves a bronze.

The pair beat Julien Prosser and Mark Williams for third place in three tight sets (19-21, 21-17, 15-13).

The first two sets were hard-fought affairs, with neither team wishing to give ground. The Swiss took the advantage in the tiebreak, forcing the Australians to play catch-up.

Heuscher and Kobel took a decisive lead at 13-10 in the final set, finally closing out the game 15-13.

Switzerland’s medal tally now stands at five – one gold, one silver and three bronze – with three days of competition remaining.

swissinfo with agencies

Riederer’s bronze is the third triathlon medal for Switzerland since the discipline was introduced in 2000.

At the 2000 Sydney Olympics Brigitte McMahon took gold in the women’s triathlon, while Magali Messmer took bronze.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR