World Mixed Doubles and World Seniors get underway in Russia

The World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship and World Senior Curling Championships start this Sunday in the Ural Lightning Ice Palace in Chelyabinsk in Russia. The event goes ahead despite the widespread travel disruption caused by the Icelandic volcano eruption.

For the World Curling Federation and its member association, the Russian Curling Federation, it is a landmark event as it is the first time that the Russian Federation has hosted a World Curling Championships. It also paves the way to the country organising the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi in 2014.

Both the Mixed Doubles and Senior competitions will be held simultaneously on eleven sheets of curling ice which have been specially prepared in the Ice Palace.

In the Mixed Doubles, teams from Australia, Austria, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, England, Estonia, Hungary, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, and Switzerland are onsite and set to compete.
Teams from Canada, Finland, Korea, Latvia, Sweden and the USA may yet make it if flights resume. Only Norway and Scotland have officially withdrawn at this stage.

For the Senior Championships, Women’s teams from Canada, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland and the USA have made it to Chelyabinsk. The Scottish Senior women’s team remains an uncertainty.

In the Senior Men’s competition, teams from Australia, Canada, England, Hungary, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland and the USA have arrived in Chelyabinsk. Only Estonia, Wales and Scotland have officially withdrawn. Finland is expected in Chelyabinsk on Sunday evening and the Netherlands are still to declare their situation

The opening ceremony for the event takes place at 18:30 local (UTC/GMT 6) on Saturday 17th with the round robin for the Mixed Doubles and Men’s and Women’s Senior championships getting underway on Sunday morning. Round robin play will continue through to the evening of Thursday 22nd.

Quarterfinals for the Mixed Doubles will take place on Friday 23rd along with the semi-finals for the Men’s and Women’s senior events. Saturday 24th will see the semi-final games for the Mixed Doubles being staged in the morning and at the same time the Bronze and Gold medal games for the Seniors. The Bronze and Gold medal games for Mixed Doubles take place at 14:00 local time on Saturday.