Esbjerg Daily: European Curling Championships 2015 – Day 4

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Scotland’s women took a comprehensive victory in their only game of the day, but the men’s struggles continue, as they suffered two defeats.

Scotland men (Kyle Smith, Thomas Muirhead, Kyle Waddell, Cammy Smith) began the day against Switzerland, skipped by Peter De Cruz.

It became an uphill task for the Scots within three ends, as a steal of three in end two and one in end three propelled Switzerland into a 5-0 lead.

Although Scotland got two in end four, twos in ends five and six for Switzerland killed the game – the Scots conceding at 9-2.

Afterwards, Thomas Muirhead said: “We missed a few opportunities and they punished us.

“We just need to forget that one and try to get a win later on.”

There was a better result for Eve Muirhead and her women’s rink of Anna Sloan, Vicki Adams and Sarah Reid.

Against Dorottya Palancsa’s Hungary, they passed up an opportunity to score five or more in end two, but then stole three in end three for a 4-1 lead.

Further steals in ends four and five put them in a commanding 7-1 lead, and they won in eight ends by a score of 9-3.

Skip Muirhead was pleased with the win and to have improved to a W3 L2 record.

“The scoreboard made it look like it wasn’t such a good game, but it was,” she said.

“I was pleased not only with my own performance but the rest of the girls too – it makes my job easier when they play well.”

Coach David Hay added: “The girls played a lot better today, with better control of draw weight, which had been a problem.

“We had an attitude of going back to basics, focusing on the win, and it paid off.”

But there was to be more disappointment for Smith’s rink, against Jaap van Dorp’s Netherlands.

These two rinks have notched some impressive results on tour this season, but the Dutch were the outstanding team here as their wily placement and dead-eye hitting was too much for the Scots to handle.

Six consecutive steals of one for the Dutch slowly drained the life from the Scottish challenge, the match finishing 8-2.

Scotland are joint bottom of the round robin standings on W1 L4 alongside Italy. Norway, on five wins from five, lead the way, ahead of Sweden (W4 L1), Finland and Germany (both W3 L2).

In the women’s table, Denmark are the only unbeaten team left after Russia suffered a surprising loss to Norway. Finland and Switzerland sit with Scotland in joint third, on W3 L2.

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In the B-Division, there were defeats for England men (7-6 against Latvia) and Wales men (9-7 to Belgium – giving up four in end nine proving fatal to the Welsh cause).

Wales sit joint bottom of Group A with W1 L4, while England are W1 L3.

As for England women, conceding fours in ends four and five made the difference as they lost 10-6 to Latvia, but they bounced back in the evening to defeat the Netherlands 9-2, with steals of two in end four and three in end eight.

Their record stands at won three, lost three.

***

Tomorrow sees Scotland women face Germany and Estonia, while the men play Finland in between.

Wales men take on Hungary, England men play Austria and England women are up against Austria and France.

You can get updates via @RoaringGameBlog on Twitter, plus stone-by-stone coverage of several games through CurlingGeek.

Eurosport and World Curling TV will again be televising matches including Sweden v Switzerland (men) and Denmark v Norway (women).

For full fixtures and results, see the event website, plus photo galleries here.

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