Canada, Switzerland and United States qualify for the Pioneer Hi-Bred World Men’s play-offs

  • Canada qualify for play-offs ahead of final round-robin game © WCF / Jeffrey Au

Japan had already qualified for the play-offs when they beat Russia by 7-5 in Friday afternoon’s second-last round-robin session of the Pioneer Hi-Bred World Men’s Curling Championship 2019 in Lethbridge, Canada. However, the results in this session now mean that three other teams - Canada, Switzerland and United States - who were not playing join Japan and table-toppers Sweden in qualifying for the play-offs.

Scotland, fighting for the remaining play-off place, gave themselves the best possible start when their skip Bruce Mouat drew his second stone of the first end into position to score four points.

In the fourth end, Mouat had another draw, this time scoring three points for an 8-1 lead. Germany conceded after six ends with the score at 8-2 to the Scots.

After this game, Mouat said, “We know that we had to win there, it was almost like a play-off game. It’s probably going to be a good game [against Italy] tonight, and we’re looking forward to it”.

In the third end of his team’s game against Sweden, Italy’s skip Joel Retornaz played a draw onto the button to score two points and take a 2-1 lead. However, in the sixth end, Sweden’s skip Niklas Edin brought his final stone into a busy house to score two points and take the lead, at 4-3.

Then, in the ninth end, Edin hit out an Italian stone to score two points and move on to a 6-4 lead. The Swedes went on to win by 7-4, an 1th victory out of twelve so far for the defending champions.

These two results now mean that the winner of tonight’s game between Italy and Scotland will claim the last play-off place.

When Japan faced Russia, it was the last round-robin game for both teams, and in the fourth end Japan’s skip Yuta Matsumura played a hit and stay on a Russian stone to score three points in the end and take a 4-1 lead.

In the eighth end, Matsumura drew his second stone into position to score two points and take a 6-3 lead. Japan then went on to win by 7-5.

Afterwards, Matsumura said, “We’re very excited about getting into the play-offs.”

In the fourth game of this session, Netherlands beat Korea by 8-7. This result means that Korea finish at the foot of the table and therefore the Pacific-Asia Zone loses one of its direct qualification places for the LGT World Men’s Curling Championship 2020 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Results: Scotland 9-2 Germany; Italy 4-7 Sweden; Korea 7-8 Netherlands; Japan 7-5 Russia.

Current Standings (W-L):

Q Sweden 11-1
Q Japan 9-3
Q Canada 8-3
Q Switzerland 8-3
Italy 7-4
Scotland 7-4
Q United States 7-4
Netherlands 4-7
Germany 4-8
Russia 4-8
China 2-9
Norway 2-9
Korea 1-11

Q = qualified for the play-offs

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

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