Beach volleyball duo win bronze at All-Africa Games

It was a dream come true for Rwanda’s beach volleyball players Denyse Mutatsimpundu and Charlotte Nzayisenga after they overcame Kenya to win a bronze medal at the 2015 All Africa Games in Congo Brazzaville on Sunday evening.
Rwanda's Denyse Mutatsimpundu and Charlotte Nzayisenga (L) pose on the podium alongside Nigerian gold medalists (C) and the silver medal winners from South Africa. (Courtesy)
Rwanda's Denyse Mutatsimpundu and Charlotte Nzayisenga (L) pose on the podium alongside Nigerian gold medalists (C) and the silver medal winners from South Africa. (Courtesy)

Women beach volley

1. Nigeria

2. South Africa

3. Rwanda

It was a dream come true for Rwanda’s beach volleyball players Denyse Mutatsimpundu and Charlotte Nzayisenga after they overcame Kenya to win a bronze medal at the 2015 All Africa Games in Congo Brazzaville on Sunday evening.

The Rwandan duo beat their opponents in straight sets 2-0 (21-17 and 21-16). Angola (men) and Nigeria (women) were crowned All Africa Games champions after beating Mozambique 2-0 (21-18, 21-18) and South Africa 2-1 (11-21, 21-13 and 15-13) respectively.

The beach volleyball bronze medal came on the same day that the Team Rwanda rider Janvier Hadi clinched gold in the 150Km men’s race, which also followed the bronze that the cycling team won in the men’s team time trial on Thursday.

Mutatsimpundu said, “We are happy to win this medal. We wanted to reach the final but failed, it is part of the game. We came here with an aim to win a medal, so taking third place is too bad.”

Last year, the duo participated in the U-23 Women’s beach volleyball World Championships in Poland after finishing fourth at the Africa U-23 Championships in Kenya. Mutatsimpundu and Nzayisenga started playing beach volleyball in December 2011.

In June 2012, the pair won the U-20 African Beach Volleyball Championship in Lome, Togo after stunning pre-tournament favourites South Africa in two sets (2-0) and qualified for the 2012 World Championships in Canada.

However, they did not get the opportunity to compete in the event after the Canadian embassy in Nairobi denied the Rwandan delegation visas.

In men’s category, South Africa overcame Rwanda in the bronze medal match 2-0 (21-13, 21-15).

Meanwhile, in indoor volleyball, hosts Congo Brazzaville beat Rwanda 3-1 (25-23, 20-25, 25-18, 25-23) in the semi-final in front of more than 3000 spectators at Henry Elende Hall in Brazzaville on Sunday night.

After the home team won the first set Rwanda came back aggressively to win the second set but supported by the home crowd, Congo bounced back to win the third and fourth set.

Team captain Christophe Mukunzi led with 16 points for Rwanda while Abrais Nkouka led the winners with 15 points.

In other semi-final match, Algeria came from behind to beat Egypt 3-2 (25-16, 20-25, 19-25, 25-18 and 15-6). The final and third place matches were due to be played last evening.

 

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