Sweden win again and become the first team to claim a semi-final place

  • Sweden secure semi-final spot Photo © WCF / Richard Gray

The men’s round robin of the 2016 Le Gruyère AOP European Curling Championships continued Tuesday evening at the intu Braehead Arena near Glasgow, Scotland.

Sweden brushed aside their closest rivals, Switzerland, by a score of 8-1 in six ends to sit alone at the top of the standings with a 6-1 record and qualify their nation for the playoffs as well as a spot at the Ford World Men’s Curling Championships in April 2017.

While Sweden took two points in the first end, stole one point in the second end, and then three points in the fourth end, Switzerland only appeared once on the scoreboard, in the fifth end with a hit for one point.

Germany, skipped again by Alexander Baumann who replaced Andy Kapp yesterday, beat Scotland with a score of 4-2 in ten ends. The game was a hard-fought battle with a total of six blank ends. No team scored more than one point in a single end. Though Scotland had the lead with a score of 2-1 in the fifth end, Germany crawled back to secure a win.

Norway won 9-6 over Italy in a game that lasted nine ends. Italy’s Joel Retornaz executed a raised double take-out in second end to score a point and tie the game 1-1. However, a fifth-end steal of three points gave Norway a distinct lead. Then, a steal of one point in the sixth end made them untouchable to the Italians. Norway now ties Switzerland for second place.

Russia dominated Austria with a score of 11-5 after nine ends. The Russians stole four points in the first end to start the game with a strong advantage. After a blank end they stole another two points in the third end. Austria battled back to take two points in the fourth end, but Russia continued their dominance with a ninth-end hit for three points. The win gives them a 4-3 record.

Finland and Denmark battled for ten ends that ended in a score of 7-5 for Denmark. The Finns took three points in the seventh end to lead the game 5-3, but Denmark fought back and took one point in the eighth end, stole a single point in the ninth end and then handedly stole another two points in the tenth end to secure the win.

In the men’s B-Division Turkey beat France with a score of 6-5 to remain undefeated in the competition after five games.

The women’s B-Division saw Hungary beat Belarus by a score of 6-4 to establish themselves at the top of their division with a record of 6-1.

The next live broadcast on WCTV (geo-blocking may apply) and national broadcasters will be Denmark v Germany, in the seventh session of women’s round robin play at 08.00 on Wednesday morning.

They said it

Niklas Edin; skip, Sweden (after 8-1 win over Switzerland): "We played a really well-played game here. We started well and kept it going. And even if we got a bit late we kind of told ourselves to play well because it's getting close to the playoffs and this is just what we were looking for going into this game.”

Thomas Ulsrud; skip, Norway (after 9-6 win over Italy): "That was a tight game for the first half. We got some good breaks against Italy and managed to score three in the fifth and take command of the game there. But they had some chances too and just missed the opportunity to capitalise on some other opportunities like we did.”

Alexander Baumann; skip, Germany (after 4-2 win over Scotland): "I said yesterday that I think the tournament starts now for us. It really does. We are looking forward, it was two games today and two really close games.”

Results men's session seven: Finland 5-7 Denmark; Russia 11-5 Austria; Switzerland 1-8 Sweden; Italy 6-9 Norway; Germany 4-2 Scotland

Standings after men’s session seven (W-L):

Sweden 6-1 - Qualified for the playoffs
Norway 5-2
Switzerland 5-2
Russia 4-3
Austria 3-4
Germany 3-4
Italy 3-4
Scotland 3-4
Denmark 2-5
Finland 1-6

For live broadcast information from these championships visit, www.worldcurling.org/broadcast and www.youtube.com/WorldCurlingTV

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