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Swiss Paralympic athletes bring home three more medals

Franz Nietlispach (far left) and Heinz Frei (far right) of Switzerland take silver and bronze in Paralympic race.

(Keystone)

Swiss athletes have had another successful day at the Paralympics in Sydney, bringing the total number of medals won to eight.

Switzerland's Franz Nietlispach took the silver medal in Saturday's 10,000m wheelchair track race at the Paralympics in Sydney while his compatriot, Heinz Frei, took the bronze.

Frei, a world-record holder and Atlanta gold medallist, set an early lead in the event but Thailand's Prawat Wahoram pushed hard over the final 15 laps of the race to win the gold and set a new Paralympic record. When Wahoram surged ahead, Frei was unable to match his pace.

Wahoram increased his lead, leaving the field to battle for the minor places. The pack changed lead several times and with 100m remaining, Nietlispach edged out Frei to take the silver in 21.33.73.

On Sunday, Frei will take to the start line in the men's T53 (wheelchair) 800m semi finals. He is the current world record (1:38.02) holder in this event and won a silver medal at the Altanta Paralympic games.

He will also compete in the 1500m, 5000m and Marathon events at the Sydney games.

In the women's 800m track final, Switzerland's Ursina Greuter took the bronze medal on Saturday. Canada's Lisa Franks and Japan's Teruyo Tanaka took gold and silver respectively. Greuter's Swiss team mate, Pia Schmid, was placed eighth in the event.

So far, the Swiss have won 2 silver medals and 6 bronze at the Sydney Paralympics, which opened on Wednesday.

swissinfo with agencies.


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