Switzerland and Sweden keep pace with Pioneer Hi-Bred World Men’s leaders Canada

  • Switzerland skip, Peter De Cruz © WCF / Jeffrey Au

Wins for Switzerland and defending champions Sweden in Sunday evening’s fifth round-robin session of the Pioneer Hi-Bred World Men’s Curling Championship 2019 in Lethbridge, Canada kept them on the heels of overall leaders Canada, along with Japan, who sat out this session.

Canada, who beat China by 8-6 in this session, have played one more game than the chasing pack and sit on four wins and no losses. Sweden, who beat Norway by 11-5, and Switzerland, 9-7 winners over Russia, as well as Japan, now sit in joint second place, on three wins and no losses.

The fourth game of this session saw the Olympic champions, United States beat Germany by 8-6.

Switzerland faced a Russian team still looking for their first win and, in the second end, Switzerland’s fourth player Benoit Schwarz drew his second stone into the four-foot ring to score two points and level the game at 2-2.

In the seventh end, with the score at 6-4 in Switzerland’s favour, Russian skip Sergey Glukhov made a double take-out on the four-foot ring to score two points and level the game again, at 6-6. But after this Switzerland moved on to a 9-7 win.

After what was his team’s third win without loss so far, Switzerland skip Peter de Cruz said, “So far, so good. We’re only one quarter through the round-robin so it’s going to be a long week and just having a good start is not going to be enough. Now it’s about reminding ourselves not to get into a comfort zone but making sure that we ask the right questions and we improve in every game. We just want to play the best in our positions and if we do that, we should be up there at the end of the week.”

Canada faced China, and in the fourth end Canadian skip, Kevin Koe played an open hit on the only Chinese stone sitting in the house to score four points and take a 5-3 lead.

In the next end, China’s skip Qiang Zou had an open draw to score two points and level the game at 5-5. Zou had another draw in the seventh end to get inside two Canadian stones already in the house, scoring one point to reduce Canada’s lead to 7-6, but, despite this, Canada went on to win by 8-6 for their fourth win, to stand alone at the top of the table, undefeated.

Afterwards, Canada’s Koe said, “We’re happy with the win, they’re a good team, their skip made some good shots. Every time you win, you’re happy and then you move on. But that was probably our sloppiest game, we’ve played a lot of games so far, so maybe we didn’t quite have top concentration and maybe it showed a bit.”

Defending champions Sweden were also in action in this session, against Norway, and they opened in the strongest possible way when skip Niklas Edin played an open hit on a Norwegian stone to score five points in the first end.

Norway tried to respond and in the fourth end, their skip Magnus Ramsfjell hit out a Swedish stone on the four-foot ring to score two points reducing Sweden’s lead to 7-4.

Sweden scored four more points in the fifth end to build their lead to 11-4. After this, Norway scored one point in the sixth end, then conceded, with Sweden winning by 11-5.

In the fourth game of this session, the Olympic champions, United States faced Germany and, in the third end of the game, United States skip John Shuster hit out a German stone in the four-foot ring to score two points and take a 2-1 lead.

In the ninth end, Germany’s skip marc Muskatewitz played a hit on an American stone to score two points and reduce the American lead to 7-6. However, United States went on to win by 8-6 with a single point score in the tenth end.

Leaders Canada sit on four wins and no losses and are chased by joint second-placed teams Switzerland, Sweden and Japan. Meanwhile four teams sit at the foot of the table, still without a win – China, Korea, Norway, and Russia.

Results: Germany 6-8 United States; Norway 5-11 Sweden; Russia 7-9 Switzerland; China 6-8 Canada.

Current Standings(W-L):

Canada 4-0
Japan 3-0
Switzerland 3-0
Sweden 3-0
Netherlands 2-1
United States 2-1
Germany 1-2
Italy 1-2
Scotland 1-2
China 0-3
Korea 0-3
Norway 0-3
Russia 0-3

Watch, follow, engage

Live coverage of these championships will be available via the World Curling Federation’s broadcast partners: Eurosport (Europe-wide), TSN and RDS (Canada), NBCSports (United States), NHK (Japan), CCTV5 (China), SBS (Korea), SRF/RTS/RSI (Switzerland), Viasat (Denmark, Norway, Finland), Polsat (Poland), SVT (Sweden), Match TV (Russia), La Chaine Equipe (France), BBC Online (United Kingdom). Coverage will also be available, subject to geo-blocking restrictions, on the event website and the World Curling Federation’s Twitter, Facebook and YouTube Channels: www.youtube.com/WorldCurlingTV

To engage with the World Curling Federation on social media during the Pioneer Hi-Bred World Men’s Curling Championship 2019 follow it on Twitter, Instagram (@worldcurling) and Facebook (@WorldCurlingFederation) and use the hashtags when posting: #WMCC2019 #curling