With one game left in the round robin, Canada now sits in third place after losing 5-4 to Germany in an extra end battle on Wednesday afternoon at the World Mixed Curling Championship in Berne, Switzerland.
“Any time you lose in an extra end, it’s a good game,” said skip Max Kirkpatrick of Swift Current, Sask., who’s backed by third Jolene Campbell, second Chris Haichert, lead Teejay Haichert and coach Ron Meyers.
“We scored four ends but we never got a deuce,” he said. “I think we had a couple of ends set up early and couldn’t finish them off. In the fourth, we had a shot at about three or four, but we let him (Kapp) off the hook. He made a double and we only got the one, and I think that was the difference.”
Trailing 4-3 heading into the eighth end, Kirkpatrick had to make a draw against three for a single point to force the extra end. Without hammer, the Canadian skip made a great double to lie three, but Kapp came through with the draw for the 5-4 win.
With playoffs looming, Kirkpatrick knows that the pressure is on for the final round robin game against Norway tomorrow, but he says the team won’t do anything differently to prepare.
“We know it’s a must-win game,” he said. “Our backs are against the wall. We know we have to win to get into the playoffs and that’s going to be our focus.”
In the morning draw, Canada defeated Wales 6-3 in a game that they controlled from the start. Welsh skip Adrian Meikle rolled out on a hit for two in the fourth end, which gave Canada a 3-2 lead at the break. The teams exchanged singles, then Canada took advantage of a deuce opportunity in the seventh and led 6-3 heading into the last end, running the Welsh out of rocks for the win.
Canada, with a 5-2 record, trails Germany and Norway, both with 6-1 records, and will close out the round robin Thursday against Norway in a game to be televised on Swiss TV online (Thurs. Sept. 17, 10 a.m. ET). Finland is in fourth place with a 4-3 record and will meet Germany in the final game of the round robin. The top three teams in the pool advance to the playoffs.
Swiss Sport TV (http://www.swiss-sport.tv/) will broadcast the playoffs as well as some games from the round robin, including Canada versus Norway on Thurs. Sept. 17 at 10 a.m. (ET).
This is the first time a world championship has been staged in the traditional mixed (two male, two female players) format. It replaces the European Mixed Championship that had been played for the past few seasons.
A total of 36 teams, split into four pools of nine, will contest the world championship. The teams will play a round robin within their pool, with the top three teams from each pool reaching the playoffs, which begin Friday, Sept. 18. The pool winners will be seeded directly into the quarter-finals, while the second- and third-place teams will play crossover playoff games.
The semifinals, along with the gold- and bronze-medal games, are scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 19.
Results, statistics, news and photos from the World Mixed Curling Championship 2015 can be seen here on the WCF’s official event website: http://worldcurling.org/wmxcc2015.