Monday, February 16, 2009

Brier field in focus

With Manitoba still to come, the field for the 2009 Tim Hortons Brier in Calgary is nearly complete.

The Alberta playdown prowess of Kevin Martin (left) versus arch-rival Randy Ferbey (wincing at right) continued with another three straight wins for Martin, making it six in a row in the last two provincials.

Martin is now off to his fourth consecutive Brier.

It seems like only yesterday that Martin could never beat Ferbey in the Alberta finals. Now that has reversed, and when you remember Ferbey’s big Skins Game win for a ton of cashola last month, you realize things are slowly coming full circle.


Martin’s 7-3 win in yesterday’s finale wasn’t close, as Team Martin reached a level of play that used to be Team Ferbey’s calling card.

And remember that Martin third John Morris could never, ever beat the Ferbs... until he joined Martin.

Double hmmm.

Now throw in a dose of Mark Dacey (Nova Scotia), impressive “newcomer” Sean Geall (British Columbia), top Territories shooter Jamie Koe, Quebec’s Jean-Michel Menard and some old New Brunswick guy named Russ Howard – who is supposed to be covering the event for TSN, remember – and Calgary looks to be quite the show.

Naturally, we also have Glenn Howard (Ontario), Brad Gushue (NL), Joel Jordison (Saskatchewan), Mike Jakubo (Northern Ontario), Roddie MacDonald (PEI) and the players-to-be-named-later from Manitoba.

Both Martin and Ferbey were craving Calgary: both of them won stupendously large Briers at the Saddledome, Martin in 1997 and Ferbey in 2002.

Martin and Morris both commented at length about the lure of Calgary, and why it is so important, well over three months ago. We reprinted those stories in the January issue of The Curling News and so – being a loyal subscriber – we invite you to reach into your magazine pile and pull that one out again for a fascinating and re-timely read.

What’s that? You don’t subscribe, you say? Too bad. Lots of people do... so why not you?

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