Switzerland Selects Team of Repeat Olympians for Tokyo


Christian Baumann

The Swiss federation has named the men who will represent the country at the Olympic Games this August, with the four selected all members of the team that finished ninth at the 2016 Olympic Games and seventh at world championships in 2019.

Four-time European Championships medalist Christian Baumann, 2017 Euros high bar champion Pablo Brägger, two-time Euros medalist Benjamin Gischard, and 2016 Euros team medalist Eddy Yusof will once again share the Olympic stage together, having consistently stood out as Switzerland’s top gymnasts at the three trials held throughout May and June with Yusof winning the first two while Baumann topped the podium at the final meet.

Though Gischard’s all-around scores have been a bit low in comparison to the other three throughout the trials, his scores on floor and vault have been strong enough for him to fit into a “best team score” scenario, and his pommel horse is also valuable when he’s hitting.

Taha Serhani and Noe Seifert also had some strong trial meets, with Serhani likely to earn the reserve spot, though the federation will wait until the conclusion of national championships later this weekend to determine who will travel with the team.

Notably missing from the 2016 team – and the core MAG group that has stood out internationally throughout the entirety of the past quad – is Oliver Hegi, who announced his retirement in March. Hegi, whose final major competition was at world championships in 2019 where he landed a spot in the all-around final in addition to helping the team qualify to Tokyo, returned to training after a break during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, but said in his announcement that it was simply time for him to move on to other things and focus on his physics studies.

While the Swiss women didn’t qualify a full team, Giulia Steingruber – this year’s European vault champion and the bronze medalist on vault at both the 2016 Olympics and world championships in 2017 – once again earned an individual spot, and will compete at her third Games in Tokyo this summer.

Article by Lauren Hopkins

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