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Witschonke replaces Schwaller-Hürlimann on Switzerland's Team Tirinzoni

Switzerland Silvana Tirinzoni - The Canadian Press

The four-time defending women's world curling champions have made a lineup change to close the 2022-23 curling season. 

In a surprise move, Switzerland's Team Silvana Tirinzoni have parted ways with lead Briar Schwaller-Hürlimann and replaced her with 24-year-old Selina Witschonke.

Schwaller-Hürlimann, 29, and second Carole Howald joined Team Tirinzoni this season after the front-end departures of Esther Neuenschwander and Melanie Barbezat. 

Despite the new lineup, featuring Tirinzoni at skip and sharpshooting fourth Alina Paetz, the Swiss continued their dominance at the World Women's Curling Championship in March, capturing their fourth straight title with a perfect 14-0 record.  

However, ahead of this past week's season-ending Champions Cup in Regina, Team Tirinzoni announced Schwaller-Hürlimann was no longer with the team and that Canadian Rachel Erickson would be filling in at the event. 

“The achievements that we were able to celebrate with Briar Schwaller-Hürlimann during the last season remain unforgettable for us—for the private and sporting future we wish Briar only the best!” the team said on social media via a translation.

On Saturday, Witschonke, formerly of Switzerland's Team Michèle Jäggi, was announced as the replacement. 

"Selina has celebrated a number of successes on the curling tour in recent years and has been able to establish herself with her team in the top 15 in the world rankings. With her talent, commitment and her understanding of the game, she will strengthen our team," the team said on social media via a translation. 

Team Tirinzoni have won 36 straight games at the women's worlds, dating back to the Calgary bubble in 2021.