Canada finishes day with big win over South Korea at 2021 World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship
Canada’s Kerri Einarson and Brad Gushue remain tied at the top of the standings in their pool after splitting a pair of games on Wednesday at the 2021 World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship on Tuesday in Aberdeen, Scotland.
Draw 5A: Canada 8 – South Korea 3
Canada opened the game with three consecutive scores in the first three ends, two in the first end followed by single steals in the second and third ends. South Korea fought back over the middle portion of the game. First, the team ran its power play in the fourth end and scored two. It also took advantage of a missed double by Canada in the fifth end to steal another point and only trailed by one.
But the experience of Einarson and Gushue prevailed during the final ends of the game. First, there was a score of three in the sixth end, set up by a superb double by Gushue and secured with a hit for three from Einarson.
South Korea offered handshakes after the seventh end when the team missed a raise attempt and gave up another steal.
“I missed a couple of shots there in the fifth end, which put us in trouble and then I was overly cautious on [Kerri’s] line call on the last one, but I felt we both played a solid game and getting the three in the sixth kind of put that game away,” Gushue said.
Canada’s next two games on Thursday will be important ones against playoff contenders. Canada will play Italy’s Stefania Constantini and Amos Mosaner (4-1) at 7:30 a.m (all times ET), and Scotland’s Jennifer Dodds and Bruce Mouat (4-1) at 2:30 p.m., which will be broadcasted live on TSN.
“We’ve got a tough day ahead of us against two top teams tomorrow, so we wanted to make sure we got this one, which puts us in and 4-1, and now we’re in pretty good shape,” Gushue said.
Draw 4A: Canada 5 – Australia 8
Einarson (Camp Morton, Man.), Gushue (St. John’s, N.L.) and coaches Scott Pfeifer and Heather Nedohin faced their first defeat on Wednesday morning at Curl Aberdeen in Scotland. Australia’s Tahli Gill and Dean Hewitt defeated Canada 8-5 during their pool’s fourth round-robin draw.
Australia was winless heading into the game, but that record is not evidence of what the Australians are capable of on the ice. At the last World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship in 2019, Gill and Hewitt took the competition by storm, advancing through the 48-team field to the bronze-medal game, which they narrowly lost in an extra end to the United States.
“Ultimately a tough loss for us because we realize that would have put us into a great position heading into the second half of the week. Full credit to Australia, though. They executed well on most of their shots and gave us our toughest game of the week so far.”
The teams exchanged scores of two for the first half of the game, entering the break tied at 4-4. Australia gained the upper hand in the fifth end after forcing Canada to take one point. Needing to seize the momentum Gill and Hewitt used their power play in the sixth end to play a relatively open strategy, resulting in a score of two and a 6-5 lead. But the most significant difference was still to come. In the seventh end on a Canadian power play, Australia forced Canada into a difficult raise attempt to score. The shot missed, and Australia had a two-point lead heading into the final end. Einarson and Gushue attempted to orchestrate a two-point end but couldn’t muster it into fruition and Australia scored another point.
“Another strong start from Team Canada but couldn’t manage to pull away from Australia after scoring 2 in the first end on a great draw by Kerri. We had a few missed chances to capitalize in the middle part of the game, leaving us two down playing the last end after a missed opportunity in the 7th power play end,” Pfeifer said.
TSN/RDS 2, the official broadcast partners of Curling Canada’s Season of Champions, will provide live coverage of select Canada round-robin games, in addition to all playoff games. CLICK HERE for their complete broadcast schedule.
For live scoring, standings and team lineups from the 2021 World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship, go to https://worldcurling.org/events/wmdcc2021
The French version of this story will be posted as soon as possible at www.curling.ca/?lang=fr
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