The quarter-finals proved the limit for the Scottish rinks in action this weekend, with Team Mouat’s unbeaten start to the season finally ending in Basel, while Team Jackson gave a good account of themselves in Stockholm.
Team Drummond joined Mouat in the Swiss Cup Basel last eight, but neither could go any further, as the big European titles were claimed by current/former world champions in Teams Gushue and Paetz.
There were four Scottish rinks in Switzerland for the Swiss Cup Basel – Teams Brewster, Drummond, Mouat and Smith.
Brewster (Tom Brewster, Duncan Menzies, Scott Andrews, Alasdair Schreiber) began with three straight wins – over Retornaz, Sciboz and Stjerne – to make the A-Road final, only for them to miss out 6-5 against Ulsrud of Norway.
That proved the beginning of the end for them, as two more 6-5 defeats – against Kauste and Van Dorp – finished their challenge.
Drummond (Greg Drummond, Ross Paterson, Gregor Cannon, Michael Goodfellow, Derrick Sloan) opened with a thumping 8-1 win over Wunderer, but then lost to Baumann and Bruggmann to drop to the C-Road.
But victories over Heinimann and Walstad took them to the C-Road final, where they won their rematch with Baumann 6-1 to secure a playoff spot.
Mouat (Bruce Mouat, Grant Hardie, Bobby Lammie, Hammy McMillan) had won two tournaments in Ontario last month without losing a match, and they made it W15 L0 in Basel by seeing off Hess, only for the winning record to come to an end against De Cruz.
They responded by beating Snitil and Van Dorp, only to lose to De Cruz again to drop to the C-Road, where another win over Hess put them into the C final against Smith.
Smith (Kyle Smith, Thomas Muirhead, Kyle Waddell, Cammy Smith) had reached that point courtesy of wins over Staehli and Van Dorp, defeats to Gushue and Edin, and then victories against McCormick and Stjerne.
Team GB’s chosen ones for the Olympics lost to Mouat in the quarter-finals of the Stu Sells Oakville Tankard, and it was the same story here – Mouat stealing their way into a 4-0 lead and winning 5-2.
That left Drummond and Mouat as the Scottish sides left standing for Sunday’s quarter-finals, but De Cruz scored twos in ends seven and eight to beat Drummond 7-4, while Mouat went toe-to-toe with Ulsrud but lost 5-4.
Canadian rink Gushue took their fifth Swiss Cup Basel title by defeating Ulsrud 5-2 in the final.
At the Stockholm Ladies Cup, Team Fleming (Hannah Fleming, Jen Dodds, Alice Spence, Vicky Wright) had their challenge ended early with three defeats – to Sundberg, Christensen and Paetz.
They did end on a high though, with a 5-4 win over Jentsch.
Team Jackson (Sophie Jackson, Naomi Brown, Mili Smith, Sophie Sinclair), meanwhile, edged into the playoffs (via draw shot) with a W2 L2 record – beating Matsumura and Wang, defeated by Sidorova and Wrana.
The quarter-finals pitted them against Paetz, and a three in end six proved crucial for the Swiss rink in their 6-4 win – and they went on to secure the competition crown, beating Kim 9-8 after an extra end in a high-scoring final.
Team Hamilton (Claire Hamilton, Gina Aitken, Rachael Halliday, Rachel Hannen), meanwhile, played their second competition in Canada – the Avonair Cash Spiel in Edmonton, Alberta.
They went out with three losses – to Marthaller, Kaufman and Nichol – although there was a Scottish winner of sorts… Nadine Scotland’s rink taking the title.
Finally, the Kinross Junior Classic (Asham Under-21 Slam) also took place over the weekend.
Teams Kinnear, Morton, Craik and Haswell qualified from men’s Groups A and B, with Teams Findlay, Bryce, Morrison and Davie progressing from the women’s pools.
The men’s final pitted Craik against Kinnear, and it was the former – made up of James Craik, Mark Watt, Angus Bryce, Niall Ryder – who triumphed, scoring three in end two and four in end four on their way to an 8-4 win.
The women’s final brought victory for Morrison (Rebecca Morrison, Amy MacDonald, Hailey Duff, Leeanne McKenzie), who scored two in end one and three in the fourth to beat Davie 5-3.