Keizer/van Iersel claim silver at Grand Slam event in Gstaad
News from the FIVB
Gstaad, Switzerland, July 7, 2012. In the glistening gold medal match played on Saturday afternoon in front of an enthusiastic and appreciative packed house at the Gstaad Stadium center court, USA’s Misty May-Treanor/Kerri Walsh won the 39th gold medal of their illustrious FIVB SWATCH World Tour career by dismantling Netherland’s fifth-seeded and 2012 European champions Sanne Keizer/Marleen van Iersel, 21-10, 21-13 in 32 minutes.
May-Treanor/Walsh, playing in their 76th World Tour event with their 62nd final-four finish as a team, have won 39 gold medals and 59 medals in total including their sixth gold medal in this popular Grand Slam event held in a picturesque valley in the Swiss Alps. Ending the tournament with a 7-0 match record, they were only pushed to three sets once in their quarterfinal victory over American compatriots Jennifer Kessy/April Ross.
Sanne Keizer and Marleen van Iersel were playing in their 43rd career tournament and earned their 12th final-four finish and first silver medal. Both matches the two teams had played against each other prior to Saturday where three-setters with the Dutch winning the first meeting and the Americans the second.
Marleen van Iersel commented after the final: “Kerri and Misty played so strong. We would have needed our very best performance to beat them, but this was obviously not the case in this match. As good as they played, like the true champions that they are, it was just not possible for us to win”.
In the bronze medal match, Switzerland’s eighth-seeded Simone Kuhn/Nadine Zumkehr started slow and came back to thrill their flag-waving home-country fans that they continually brought to their feet in the packed center court stadium to finally defeat Belgium’s Katrien Gielen/Liesbeth Mouha in two sets, 21-18, 21-16 in 36 minutes. Switzerland’s Kuhn/Zumkehr finished their 42nd FIVB SWATCH World Tour event together by earning their third final four and first in Gstaad and won their first bronze medal as they finished the tournament with a 6-1 record. It was also the first Swiss medal in the 13-year history of the women’s competition in Gstaad. Belgium’s Gielen/Mouha were playing their 17th FIVB SWATCH World Tour event together and earned their first final four as a team and first in the career of either athlete with any partner.
Following her team’s bronze medal victory, Switzerland’s Simone Kuhn stated: “It’s wonderful to win the bronze medal here in Gstaad. In the first set I had some problems with siding out. If we were behind we reminded each other to cool down and start over which we did when we got behind in the first set. We started serving with more aggressiveness point for point. We played a great tournament and we lost to the gold medal team in the semifinal and it is just an honor to be on the court at the same time as Misty and Kerri”.
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