First ending: Canadian Brad Gushue cruised to a 10-8 victory over China, but his side’s luck turned against the ROC, losing 7-6 in an extra set on Tuesday. Gushue’s split day helped his team hold third place in the men’s curling tournament at the Beijing Winter Olympics with a 5-3 record. Canada will have to shake off the loss to the ROC with the men’s penultimate draw and one round robin game remaining against medal contender Great Britain (Wednesday at 8:05 p.m. ET).
Second ending: Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Canada didn’t start with the hammer against China or the ROC. Gushue is now 2 for 8 in the draw challenges, only slightly better than Canadian women’s team Jennifer Jones (1 for 6), but nothing exceptional. Gushue’s silver lining is that his crew are still ranked sixth overall among the 10 men’s teams – even though they didn’t win the hammer, they’re not that far out of the competition – and they’re in a better position. than USA (eighth) and ROC (ninth) if those teams factor in tiebreaker scenarios. Simple solution: just beat Great Britain and don’t worry about tiebreakers. Easy as pie, right?
Third ending: Canada took advantage of a few lucky breaks against China when Xiuyue Ma missed a slash double in the fourth and missed her final shot in the sixth to give Gushue a deuce out of nowhere. Gushue was under pressure in the eighth end, Ma powered a comeback and Canada managed to score three key points. The biggest percentage difference was at skip, where Gushue shot 90% overall (including 100% from his eight draws) while Ma finished 69%.
Fourth ending: Sergei Glukhov might want to borrow pro wrestler Nikita Koloff’s old nickname, as ROC was the “Russian nightmare” for Gushue. Canada looked to be in trouble early on, with the ROC having the opportunity to score four in the process. Oh my nerves, Indeed. Glukhov was heavy on his first, however, allowing Gushue to freeze a heap, and the ROC skip was also heavy on his last which turned a huge score into a steal after a bar.
It should have been a wake-up call, but neither team was completely strong until the final ends, when Glukhov in particular found his footing. An incredible angle increase for two runs in the ninth gave ROC a 6-4 lead. Gushue doubled to sit three in the 10th, but Glukhov hit a near buzzer-beater to dodge the guards and double a pair. A draw in round scored a deuce for Gushue and tied it 6-6 to force the extra set. Glukhov needed to draw for the OT win and landed straight on the button to complete the upset.
Fifth end: Canada won’t be so lucky against Great Britain, which leads all teams in shooting with 87.1 percent. Fortunately, Canada is just behind in second place at 85.7%. Skip Bruce Mouat is also first among the skips with 89.1%, followed by Gushue far behind with 84.3%. After three straight games in the 90s, Gushue looked human against ROC, shooting 75%, and third Mark Nichols had his worst game of the week, at 67%. Longtime friends and 2006 Olympic gold medalists know the winning formula and just need to make more hits.
Sixth Ending: As for the rest of the men’s standings, Sweden’s Niklas Edin qualifies for the playoffs with a 7-1 record, the only loss suffered by Great Britain. Speaking of GBR, Mouat’s side clinched a place in the semi-finals with this 7-6 win over Sweden and sit in second place, at 6-1. Canada (5-3) is third, followed by a tie for fourth place between the United States and the ROC (both at 4-4). Switzerland (3-4) are also still in the game, and technically China (3-5), Norway (3-5) and even Italy (2-5), with only Denmark (1-6 ) eliminated. That should settle shortly after Wednesday’s draw (1:05 a.m. ET). Gushue will be idle and can only wait and see.
Seventh ending: The Canadian women’s curling team, led by Jennifer Jones, earned a bye to the lone women’s draw on Tuesday, giving them a full day off. It’s probably not the bye they would have booked, as after picking up back-to-back wins, they may have preferred to maintain momentum rather than freeze. Jones, who won Olympic gold in 2014, is 3-3, tied for fifth with South Korea, and has three round robin games remaining against the United States (Tuesday 20 7:05 a.m. ET), China (Wednesday 7:05 a.m. ET) and Denmark (Wednesday 8:05 p.m. ET). Fate is still in their hands at this point.
Eighth end: No team has yet qualified for the semi-finals of the women’s division, although two-time defending world champions Switzerland lead the way, 6-1. Defending Olympic gold medalist Sweden (5-2) is second and we have yet to see Anna Hasselborg’s final form. Great Britain, Japan and the United States are locked in a three-way tie for third place, each at 4-3, with Canada and South Korea both close behind. China and Denmark are 2-5, but away only the ROC (1-6) are knocked out of the medal round. Canada’s wins over Great Britain and South Korea are crucial, and a win over the United States will do wonders for their chances of securing head-to-head records if there is still a stalemate. .