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The Streak continues for Martin

A different town, a different event, but the same result…at least as far as Team Martin is concerned, even after a mid-game scare.

This afternoon, in Draw 2 action at the $150,000 Canada Cup, presented by Richardson International, Edmonton’s Kevin Martin edged Moncton’s Russ Howard, 8-6 in his opener, stealing two in the ninth end and one in the 10th for the verdict.

Martin was coming off a spectacular Tim Hortons Brier in Calgary, where he went undefeated for the second year in a row, in generating a Brier record unbeaten streak of 26 games.

His Saville Sports Centre team of third John Morris, second Marc Kennedy and lead Ben Hebert was in a hole early, though, down 4-2 at the fifth end break, then 6-3 after seven.  But the four-time Brier winner and reigning world champion righted the ship with a pair in the eighth to cut the gap to 6-5, before stealing the last two ends.

In other men’s games at the Farrell Agencies Arena in the Gallagher Centre, in front of a packed house of 1,785, Brad Gushue of St. John’s proved a 9-3 winner over Winnipeg’s Kerry Burtnyk, Toronto’s Wayne Middaugh put away Mike McEwen of Winnipeg, 10-5 and Brier runner-up Jeff Stoughton, also of Winnipeg, got off to a good start by defeating defending Cup champion Kevin Koe of Edmonton, 7-5.

In the single women’s encounter, Mary-Anne Arsenault of Halifax, a five-time Scotties and two-time world champion when playing second for Colleen Jones, stole singles in the eighth and 10th ends to trip up 2006 Olympic bronze medallist Shannon Kleibrink of Calgary, 5-3.

Draws continue at 4:30 pm and 8:30 pm local (Central) time on Wednesday, as 20 of the best men’s and women’s teams in the country continue the battle for the winner’s purse of $25,000 and a berth into the pool of 16 teams eligible for the Tim Hortons Canadian Curling Trials, December 6-13 in Edmonton.

TSN will provide live coverage of the women’s and men’s semi-finals on Saturday, March 21, followed by the women’s (8:30 am CT/10:30 am ET) and men’s (7:30 pm CT/9:30 pm ET) finals on Sunday, March 22.  SaskTel Max Local on Demand is also airing all round robin draws, plus the Saturday morning Page Playoff games, province-wide, on a 24-hour delayed basis.