Into the win column!
Team Canada rebounds with two-win day in Beijing
Team Canada knew there was going to be some rust to shake off.
After opening the 2021 Kuntai Group World Wheelchair Curling Championship with a loss to the United States, Canada rebounded Sunday with a two-win day; victorious over Switzerland and China.
“We’re happy to get in the win column,” said Canadian skip Mark Ideson. “It’s been a long time since we’ve been in a competitive environment, so we knew there was gonna be rustiness.”
After losing its first competitive game in nearly two years to the U.S. Team Canada knew that it was going to be a process to improve as the week progressed.
“We’re gonna build momentum from the loss yesterday,” said Ideson. “We picked up a win today and hopefully we can keep going.
In their first game of the day, Canada started without last-rock advantage against Switzerland. After forcing the Swiss to one in the first end, Canada answered with two, and then a steal of two in the third.
The two sides traded singles for the rest of the game, resulting in a 6-3 victory for Canada.
In the second draw of the day, Canada faced China, this time starting with the hammer. Canada opted to blank three ends before China stole the fourth to lead 1-0. Canada responded with a score of two and a steal, taking a 3-1 lead. They forced China to one in the sixth, and took one in the seventh. Up two playing the eighth, Canada ran its opponent out of rocks to claim their second win of the day.
For all teams, this is more than a World Championship. This is a dress rehearsal for the Paralympics. The venue is the same building where the Paralympics will be held in March of 2022.
“Now the goal is just really to get comfortable with the surroundings,” said Ideson. “Get comfortable being in competition again and just build momentum going into the Paralympics.”
Canada resumes Monday with games against Sweden and Scotland. In the meantime, with limited tourist options in Beijing due to COVID-19, the Canadian team members are certain that they can keep themselves entertained.
“We’ve got some fun card games that we play, my daughter is a curler, so I’ve been able to watch a few of her games live,” said Ideson. “We have great team camaraderie, so we like hanging out with each other which is great.”
This story will be available in French as soon as possible at https://www.curling.ca/?lang=fr.
For more information about the 2021 World Wheelchair Curling Championship, including scores, schedules and team lineups, go to worldcurling.org/events/wwhcc2021/