Olympic siblings Sam and Molly Meech might be on track to do what Sonny Bill Williams and his sister couldn't.

The Meech siblings and Williams and his rugby sevens-playing sister Niall all came to Rio with podium intentions.

And Niall was the first to achieve it when she and New Zealand's "Sevens Sistas" made the Olympic final, falling in a gallant battle to Australia and having to settle for a silver medal. But SBW's hopes were literally crushed the very next day when he ruptured his Achilles tendon in New Zealand's opening men's sevens match against Japan. New Zealand's medal prospects were then dashed the next day in the quarter finals by eventual winners Fiji.

But now sailors Sam and Molly Meech could achieve what the high profile SBW and Niall couldn't.


If they can, they will create New Zealand Olympic history in Rio this week.

Both are in the medal hunt in their respective classes as the Kiwi sailing team runs hot in the Games.

And although they would not be the first Kiwi siblings to win Olympic medals - recent examples include board sailors Bruce and Barbara Kendall and the Evers-Swindell rowing twins - they would become the first brother and sister in New Zealand's history to medal at the same Olympics in different events.

Bruce Kendall won a bronze at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics and then the gold medal in Seoul four years later. Barbara's gold medal feat came at a different Games altogether, in Barcelona in 1992. Twins Georgina and Caroline Evers-Swindell were gold medal pairs winners in Beijing in 2008.

Sam Meech won race 10 of the men's Laser class regatta earlier today to propel himself into third place and podium contention with the medal race set for Tuesday.

"It's fantastic to be going into the medal race with a bib - that was my goal from the start of the week so I'm really stoked with that," said Meech referring to the fact he is placed in the top three and will wear the red bib for the medal race.

Sister Molly has also been in strong form alongside Alex Maloney in the 49ers. The Kiwi women's skiff pair won a race today, and returned solid keepers in three others, to climb into 3rd overall, tied on points with 2nd place.

"We had a pretty consistent day and managed to win the last race so that was a really cool way to finish it off," said Meech.

Maloney said: "Molly and my teamwork is going really well so we're really happy with how we are going. There are probably eight girls who could potentially medal and a lot of the others are really pushing hard so it's really good racing."

The Meech siblings are from a strong Tauranga-based sailing family.

The sailing could also deliver another feel-good story this week.

Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders lie on the edge of the medal podium in fourth place in the Nacra mixed class.

Gemma is the daughter of Jan Shearer, three times Olympian and 470s silver medallist at the 1992 Barcelona Games, and four-times America's Cup winner, Murray Jones.