Switzerland show they mean business at WGNZ Mixed Doubles

Naseby, 25 August 2011 – Switzerland have had strong wins in their last two games of the Mixed Doubles curling event at the 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games.

They now sit at the top of the leaderboard with New Zealand after 5 wins from their eight round robin matches. NZ have a game in hand.


Men

The fifth round of the Men’s Fours was held yesterday afternoon (Wednesday).  China played the New Zealand Seniors and won 9-5. Australia played Japan. It was 3 all at half time but Australia won the seventh and eighth ends giving them the game 6-4. The New Zealand Juniors played Korea and lost 3-9. The New Zealand Men had the bye.


Mixed Doubles

The Mixed Doubles played their second round of the day on Wednesday evening. Switzerland showed Japan they meant business when they opened with 5 points in the first end and 3 in the second. With an 8 point lead they were able to control the rest of the match and took an 11-3 victory after the sixth end 11-3.

The USA played a strong game against Australia and won 9-2. USA player Andrew Ernst said, “There were a lot of rocks in play at the ends where Australia had the hammer but Jennifer (Westhagen) was able to throw stellar shots to either steal or force one. The turning point was when we ended up stealing 4 points because they delivered a risky shot that didn’t curl properly. For the rest of the game we had better angles and were able to be more conservative.”

Latvia played Finland. Finland was ahead at the end of the third 4-1 but Latvia won the next four ends winning 9-4 at the end of the seventh. Hungary took on New Zealand and it was a close game through to the sixth end with New Zealand leading 4-3. Hungary scored 4 points in the seventh which put them in front and helped their eventual 9-4 win. China had the bye.

After their evening game on Wednesday the Mixed Doubles had an early start in the first round of Day 6 of the curling events. The skills of Switzerland’s Double World Champion Irene Schori showed in their game as they thrashed Latvia 11-1. The USA team opened the scoring against Japan with 1 point in the first end but Japan then took control and finished with a win of 10-2.

Kim Forge AUS
Kimberley Forge (Australia). Photo © Katya Kiiskinen / WCF

Australia played China in a tense game that saw them 4 all at the end of the sixth. China scored 2 in the seventh to take a handy lead but Australia replied with a 4 in the eighth and final end to record an 8-6 win. Hugh Millikin from the Australian team said, “It was a very tense game – as it always is between Australia and China - and there were moments of controversy where we had to involve the umpire. After a very close game we scored 4 in the final end to win the game by 2. It was Kim Forge’s first win against China and she was very happy with that. We have our last game in the round robin against New Zealand which will be a very intense game but much more friendly.”

Finland played New Zealand. The Kiwis fell behind early, trailing 1-4 at the fourth end break, but came back strongly to lead 5-4 after seven ends. On New Zealand’s last stone of the eighth Bridget Becker delivered a hit and roll to knock one of Finland’s stones out of the way. As Finland went to deliver their hammer stone, New Zealand had shot and three in the house. Paavo Kuosmanen attempted a double takeout but wrecked on the guard, giving New Zealand the end and an 8-4 win. Hungary had the bye.


Women

The Women’s Fours played in the second round of the day. China played New Zealand and ran NZ out of stones in the last end for a 6-3 win. The NZ Junior side took on Japan who took a big lead from the start, scoring 6 points in the first two ends and going on to beat the Juniors 12-3. Korea had the bye.

This afternoon the Men’s Fours play in the last round of the day. The New Zealand Juniors take on Australia, China play their New Zealand hosts and the NZ Seniors take on Japan. Korea has the bye.

100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games continues tomorrow (Friday 26 August) with the last rounds of the Mixed Doubles round robin, the Women’s double round robin and the Men’s round robin. Saturday will see any required tiebreakers in all competitions, followed by semi-finals in the Men's and Women's Fours.