Snowboarding star Gian Simmen has been chosen to carry the Swiss flag in Friday's opening ceremony for the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics.This content was published on February 4, 2002 - 10:42
The halfpipe specialist from Arosa, who surprised the world, his country and even himself by winning gold at the Nagano Olympics four years ago, was named on Monday as the man to lead the Swiss delegation into the Rice Eccles Stadium.
Snowboarding is seen as one of Switzerland's sports at this month's Games, with the Swiss squad looking to build on their Nagano success. As well as Simmen's gold, the boarders left Japan with a bronze medal won by Ueli Kestenholz in the slalom discipline.
While Simmen and Kestenholz will both be bidding to add to their Olympic medal tally, the Swiss are also expecting strong performances from the likes of Gilles Jaquet, Fabienne Reuteler and Steffi von Siebenthal.
Simmen succeeds two bobsleighers as Swiss flag-bearer with Gustav Weber and Guido Acklin having been accorded the honour in 1994 and 1998 respectively.
swissinfo with agencies
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