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ECC 2011 Day 7 (Evening) Update

Photo: WCF/Richard Gray

Russia’s women won bronze on home territory when they beat Denmark by 13-7 in the bronze-medal play-off at the Le Gruyère European Curling Championships 2011 in Moscow, while the Danish men beat the Czech Republic by 9-6 for their bronze medals.

Denmark scored two in the opening end, but Russian skip Anna Sidorova brought her team right back, levelling the game with a score of two in the second end. In the fifth end, Danish skip Lene Nielsen was facing four Russian stones when she came to play her last shot, but she was long and couldn’t get inside all of them, to give away a steal of two. She undid some of that damage with a hit and stay in the next end for two points to cut the Russian lead back to 5-4. She moved to close the gap again in the ninth end with a hit that gave her a score of three and moved the score to 8-7 for Russia, just a one-point lead.

In the tenth end, and in front of a tense home crowd, Sidorova was, as usual, a picture of calmness as she icily delivered a precision hit to score five for a final score of 13-7 and Russia’s first European Championship curling medal since 2006.

Afterwards, a clearly elated Russian skip Anna Sidorova said, “It’s amazing, just awesome. I am so happy that we won. It’s much more nervous playing in front of a home crowd and I’m so happy that people can see curling. I think our bronze medal will help to bring more exposure...I am just so happy.”

In the men’s game, Denmark’s Rasmus Stjerne faced the Czech Republic, led by Jiri Snitil, with the Czechs attempting to win their nation’s first-ever medals at this level.

The Czechs took an early lead with a draw for two in the first end, but it could have been more. After the Czechs added a single steal in the second end, the Danes got themselves onto the scoreboard for the first time with a nice draw for two by Stjerne in the third end, but the Czechs compounded their problems when Snitil had a complete miss in the fourth end to gift Denmark a steal of two.

Although behind and feeling the effects of their long route to the bronze medal game, the Czechs kept fighting and Snitil produced a gentle hit in the seventh to score one point and reduce the Danish lead to 7-6.

In the eighth, Stjerne promoted his own front stone onto another of his own stones in the house to knock out a Czech stone and score the three points that effectively brought the Czechs brave campaign to an end. The Czechs managed another single in the ninth, and the teams shook hands with the score at 9-6 to Denmark.

After the game Danish skip Rasmus Stjerne, who now adds this year’s bronze medal to last year’s silver, said, “we didn’t have a shot at the gold this year and we had to settle for the bronze. Right now we have a really good feeling - we felt we had to win a medal here”.

Speaking about his opponents he added, “they have been on the ice for three games in a row, so we knew we would have the advantage on the physical side. I struggled in the first few ends and didn’t make my shots but it was a great team effort to bring it back after three down”.

Meanwhile, in the best-of-three challenge series for the final men’s and women’s European places in the line-up at this season’s world championships, France won in the men’s event beating Group “B” winners Russia by 10-4, while the Czech women beat the Hungarian “B” group winners by 7-4 in the women’s event.

GROUP A MEN: Standings after Bronze medal games

Results: www.ecc.curlit.com

Sweden (play final)
Norway (play final)
3. Denmark (BRONZE) (Qualified for WMCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
4. Czech Republic (Qualified for WMCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
5. Scotland (Qualified for WMCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
6. Switzerland (Qualified for WMCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
7. Germany (Qualified for WMCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
8. France (Qualified for ECC 2012 A Group. Play Russia, B Group winner for WMCC 2012 spot)
9. Latvia (relegated to ECC 2012 B Group)
10. Italy (relegated to ECC 2012 B Group)


GROUP A WOMEN: Standings after Bronze medal games

Results: www.ecc.curlit.com

Sweden (play final)
Scotland (play final)
3. Russia (BRONZE) (Qualified for WWCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
4. Denmark (Qualified for WWCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
5. Germany (Qualified for WWCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
6. Italy (Qualified for WWCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
7. Switzerland (Qualified for WWCC 2012 and ECC 2012 A Group)
8. Czech Republic (Qualified for ECC 2012 A Group. Play Hungary, B Group winner for WWCC 2012 spot)
9. Latvia (relegated to ECC 2012 B Group)
10. Norway (relegated to ECC 2012 B Group)

Extensive televised coverage of the Le Gruyère European Curling Championships 2011 can be seen by viewers in Europe on Eurosport. Additional live and on demand coverage will be available via the internet on the Eurosport Player. www.worldcurling.org/ecc2011-tv-and-web-coverage

Highlights of televised games can be seen here: www.youtube.com/user/WorldCurlingTV

Results: www.ecc.curlit.com
All results will be mirrored on the World Curling Federation (WCF) results database: http://results.worldcurling.org/default.aspx

Information about the event can be viewed here www.ecc2011.curlingrussia.com