Czech Republic men begin Olympic Qualification with win

  • Czech Republic in action against Finland Photo: © WCF / Alina Pavlyuchik

Skip Jiri Snitil of the host nation, Czech Republic, delivered a perfectly-judged last stone for a 5-3 win over Finland in Tuesday (5 December) evening’s opening session of men’s round-robin play in the Olympic Qualification Event, being staged in Pilsen.

Other opening session winners were Russia, who beat Denmark by 6-3; China, who had a 7-4 win over Germany; and Italy, who beat Netherlands by 7-6 win.

In the ninth end of his team’s game against the Czechs, and with the Czechs leading by 3-1, Finland’s skip Aku Kauste hit out a Czech stone to score two points and level the game at 3-3. But in the tenth end, Czech skip Snitil played his stone through some guards to hit out a Finnish stone and score two points for a 5-3 win.

In the sixth end of the game between Denmark and Russia, with the score at 1-1, Denmark’s skip Rasmus Stjerne drew his final stone into the house to score one point and take a 2-1 lead. However, Russia’s skip Alexey Timofeev responded in the ninth end with a hit for three points that gave his team a 6-3 lead. Denmark ran out of stones in the tenth end to give Russia a 6-3 victory.

In the third end of the game between Germany and China, Germany’s skip Alexander Baumann played a raise take-out on a Chinese stone to score two points from the end and reduce China’s lead to 3-2. After this China’s skip Rui Liu played a delicate tap in the fourth end to score three points and re-take the lead, at 6-2, on the way to a 7-4 win.

Netherlands faced Italy in the fourth game of this session and in the sixth end the Dutch skip Jaap Van Dorp hit out an Italian stone for a score of two points and a 5-3 lead. But, Italy responded in the tenth end when their fourth player Amos Mosaner drew his last stone into the house to score two points and record their 7-6 win.

The next live games, on national broadcasters and World Curling TV (note geo-blocking applies), at this event will be Czech Republic v Latvia and Finland v China women at 08:00, Central European Time (+1 hours, Greenwich Mean Time) on Wednesday (6 December) morning.

They said it

Sergey Glukhov; third, Russia (after 6-3 win over Denmark): “This was big pressure for us. We tried to just show that we curled as we can. We made some really good shots in the key ends. This was a good start for us. We love what we do and we’re trying to keep it going.”

Jiri Snitil; skip, Czech Republic (after 5-3 win over Finland): “We lost to Finland at the Europeans just a week ago, so we had to bounce back – it was really important. We have to be patient and wait for our chances – they will come. This is how we approached this game and this is what we’ll do again tomorrow.”

Rui Liu; skip, China (after 7-4 win over Germany): “I think for a first game we played very well at our own level. The score of three in the fourth end helped us dominate this game.”

Joel Retornaz; skip, Itaky (after 7-6 win over Netherlands): “First game, first win. We really need a win today to start this competition in the best way possible. It was not easy, it was a battle, the Dutch team played very well but we succeeded in taking our deuce in the last end which meant victory for us, so we’re very happy. There’s not a lot to work on but there is always something you can work on. We’re looking to improve our level in the next games…just keep rolling on.”

Men’s session one results: Denmark 3-6 Russia; Czech Republic 5-3 Finland; Germany 4-7 China; Netherlands 6-7 Italy

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

China 1-0
Czech Republic 1-0
Italy 1-0
Russia 1-0
Denmark 0-1
Finland 0-1
Germany 0-1
Netherlands 0-1

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