Play-off race heats up in the men's competition

  • Japan win to maintain second place in the rankings © WCF / Tom Rowland

Day five at the Pacific-Asia Curling Championships being held in Gangneung, Republic of Korea opened with the men’s seventh session of round-robin play and saw wins for Australia, Chinese Taipei, Japan and New Zealand.

Japan faced Kazakhstan in this session and in the first end, Japan skip, Yuta Matsumura, already sitting one shot stone, drew his last stone into the eight-foot ring for a score of two points.

Japan increased their lead in the third end, when Matsumura played a raise double take-out to score three points to make the score 5-1. Then in the sixth end, sitting two counters, Matsumura drew his last stone to the edge of the four-foot ring for a score of three points and the win, 9-2.

Also, in this session, New Zealand defeated Korea, by a score of 8-6.

In the fourth end, New Zealand skip, Scott Becker, played a precise tap double to score two points and take a 4-3 lead.

Later, in the tenth end with his final stone, Becker played a delicate draw around a Korean guard to catch the edge of the button to sit shot stone.

Korea skip, SooHyuk Kim attempted the take-out with his final stone of the game but was unable to clear the Becker’s stone, giving up a steal of one point and the win to New Zealand, by a score of 8-6.

Japan and New Zealand now sit in in joint second place with a record of five wins and one loss.

The session also saw Chinese Taipei play Hong Kong, with both sides needing the win to keep their slim semi-final hopes alive.

It was Chinese Taipei who came out on top with an 8-3 victory. In the fourth end of this game, Chinese Taipei skip, Randolph Shen, drew his last stone to the button for a score of two points to take a 3-1 lead.

Then in the sixth end, with the score level at 3-3, Shen played an open tap on a Hong Kong shot stone to score two points and take a 5-3 lead on their way to their 8-3 victory.

Afterwards, Chinese Taipei lead, Ting-Li Lin said, "We still have a chance for the play-offs if we win the next two games against Japan and New Zealand. And New Zealand just won this game, so that means they have more advantage over us right now. So we need to beat them and we probably need to beat Japan as well."

The final game of this session saw Australia defeat Qatar, 13-3, in a game that they sealed with a score of four points in the seventh end.

The men’s championship continues tonight at 19:00 Korea Standard Time.

Results

Session seven: Japan 9-2 Kazakhstan; Australia 13-3 Qatar; Korea 6-8 New Zealand; Hong Kong 3-8 Chinese Taipei.

Standings (W-L)

China (6-0) Q
Japan (5-1)
New Zealand (5-1)
Korea (4-3)
Chinese Taipei (3-3)
Australia (2-4)
Hong Kong (2-4)
Kazakhstan (1-5)
Qatar (0-7)

Q = Qualified for the semi-finals

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