Team Canada falls in playoffs
Canadian team exits World Wheelchair Curling Championship
Although the finish was not what it had hoped for, the Canadian team will still take a lot of positives from its week in Beijing at the Kuntai World Wheelchair Curling Championship.
After losing to the United States in the Playoff Qualification Game, pitting fourth place vs. fifth in the round robin for a place in the semifinal, the Canadians took some time to put everything in perspective.
The Canadian side of Mark Ideson, Ina Forrest, Dennis Thiessen, Jon Thurston, alternate Collinda Joseph and coach Mick Lizmore entered the event without playing in a competitive tournament since the previous 2020 World Championship in Switzerland nearly 19 months ago.
With the Paralympics just a few months away, Canada was undeniably a bit rusty entering the competition, but gained steam over the course of the week, reaching the playoffs with a 7-4 record. Once the playoff berth was earned, the Canadians knew that it was anybody’s game in a single-knockout bracket.
Unfortunately for them on Friday, this game belonged to the United States.
The U.S. started the game with last rock, an advantage based on its better rank after the round robin. After a blank in the first, the U.S. took two in the second. The two sides traded single points for the next four ends, leaving the Americans with a 4-2 lead.
In the seventh, Canada took two to tie the game at four, leaving the Americans with the hammer in the last end. After a battle over the four-foot area, Canadian fourth-rock thrower Jon Thurston came up just light on a freeze attempt, giving two points and the win to the U.S., 6-4.
The U.S, went on to face China in the semifinal, with the host team prevailing 8-5. Sweden defeated RCF in the other semi, which means it will face China in the gold-medal game on Saturday.
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/