Monday, March 05, 2007

World Juniors

EVELETH, Minn. – Enjoy the Brier, Canada, while much of the rest of the world focusses on this Iron Range town in northern Minnesota, and the annual World Junior Championships (Scottish fans in photo).

And yes, we’re here, as well. Hamilton and Eveleth, both at once. We couldn’t really call ourselves The Curling News if we weren’t able to be everywhere in the curling world at once... agree?

The host venue is Curl Mesabi, a remarkable eight-sheeter built a few years ago as a co-op venture between four local towns. Each of their curling clubs were struggling, and now they are together as one, and doing quite well.

20 teams (10 men’s and 10 women’s) are doing battle, live on CurlTV, and you can also follow the results on the event website, via the live scoring page, and also courtesy of the World Curling Federation, which is keeping track of things on their tournament pages.

Defending women’s champ Ludmila Privivkova of Russia, who stunned the field to win December’s adult European Championship, has looked fairly human so far, as has Canada’s Newfie contingent led by Stacie Devereaux.

On the mens side, Canada’s defending world champion Charley Thomas has two new teammates and boy, they looked very ordinary today versus Norway. Thomas kept his cool – as he always seems to do – as his mates struggled, and a brilliantly quiet come-around hit for two in the ninth made all the difference.

Meanwhile, the Scottish men’s team, led by Logan Gray, is in foul trouble... rocks have been kicked, expletives uttered, and brooms have been smashed, leading to two warnings, the second of them in written format. The clock is ticking... will the lads manage to quell their squirrely behaviour?

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