Switzerland stay in front as Netherlands beat defending champions

  • Team Netherlands beat Sweden for the first time during this session Photo: © WCF / Richard Gray

After Thursday’s (20 November) fifth session of men’s round-robin play, hosts Switzerland stand alone as the only unbeaten team at the Le Gruyere AOP European Curling Championships 2017 in St Gallen, Switzerland.

While they were beating Russia by 7-5, defending champions Sweden went down to their first-ever loss to Netherlands by 5-9 in what was also their first defeat of this tournament.

In the sixth end of the game with Russia, Switzerland’s fourth player Benoit Schwarz tapped back a Russian stone off the button to score two points and move his team onto a 5-4 lead. This was the telling shot in the Swiss win.

In the game against Sweden, Netherlands took a 6-3 lead into the half-time break and resisted Sweden after this all the way to their historic win.

Norway faced Italy and with the last stone, Norway’s skip Thomas Ulsrud knocked out two Italian counting stones and kept his own stone in the house to score one point in the end and seal an 8-5 win. Scotland also had a win, by 8-1 over Slovakia in just six ends and these results mean that Norway, Scotland and Sweden all share second place, with one loss each.

Germany recorded their third win so far, beating Austria by 8-3, a result that leaves the Austrians still looking for a first win, along with Slovakia.

The next live game, on national broadcasters and World Curling TV (note geo-blocking applies), at these championships will be Germany v Denmark women at 14:00, Central European Time (+1 hours, Greenwich Mean Time) on Tuesday (21 November) afternoon.

They said it

Thomas Uslrud; skip, Norway (after 8-5 win over Italy): “I’m not putting too much into what we need to do be picked for the Olympics – I’m trying just to make sure we make it into the play-offs. We had a bad game against Switzerland earlier, but we’re looking good now. We’re still to play Sweden and Scotland so we’ve still got a lot of work to do, but right now, we’re happy with four and one.”

Jaap van Dorp; skip, Netherlands (after 9-5 win over Sweden): “We had a solid game and they had some unfortunate misses but we put the brush down and it worked out. This is the first time we’ve beaten them. It’s still the round-robin and we’ll see what happens, but it’s looking good for us now. We’ll just keep going, playing like this.”

Kyle Smith; skip, Scotland (after 8-1 win over Slovakia): “We put them under a bit of pressure there. It’s good to get to four wins but we’ve got quite a tough finish now – we’re looking forward to the games ahead.”

Men’s session five results: Germany 8-3 Austria; Switzerland 7-5 Russia; Norway 8-5 Italy; Sweden 5-9 Netherlands; Scotland 8-1 Slovakia

Standings after men’s session five (W-L):

Switzerland 5-0
Norway 4-1
Scotland 4-1
Sweden 4-1
Germany 3-2
Netherlands 3-2
Italy 1-4
Russia 1-4
Austria 0-5
Slovakia 0-5

Curling fans around the world will be able to follow live coverage of these championships via the World Curling Federation’s broadcast partners on Eurosport 1 and 2, Eurosport Player, Eurosport Asia Pacific, RTS, SRF and RSI (Switzerland), SVT (Sweden), TVP Sport (Poland), La Chaine Equipe (France), TSN (Canada), NBCSports (United States) and the Olympic Channel. Coverage will also be available on the event website, the World Curling Federation’s Facebook and YouTube Channel, www.youtube.com/WorldCurlingTV (note geo-blocking will apply in certain territories).

To keep up-to-date with all the action from these championships, and the teams’ journey to the 2018 Olympic Winter Games, follow us on Twitter, Instagram (@worldcurling) and Facebook (/WorldCurlingFederation) and use the hashtags: #ECC2017 #curling