Family ties on the ice at the World Mixed Doubles

  • Australia's Lynn and Dean Hewitt Photo © WCF / Richard Gray

The World Mixed Doubles Curling Championships 2018 in Östersund, Sweden, has players who have much more than just their love for the sport in common. The teams from Spain, Guyana and Norway all siblings, while hosts Sweden’s and Denmark's players are spouses.

But two teams this season have parents pairing up with their children to represent their countries.
Mother-son duo Lynn and Dean Hewitt, who are Team Australia at the Championships, say that playing together makes for an interesting dynamic.

“It’s so easy to curl with your son because you understand each other and know what you can get away with and what you can’t. You can be brutally honest if you want, and you know you know they’re still going to love you in the end,” says Lynn.

Along with the familiarity and ease, playing with a parent also offers opportunity to tap into their experience. “I always want Mum to have the last decision, especially for her shots on the ice. She’s seen pretty much every shot in the book, and she’s been curling for so long. I’m confident in her to call all the shots,” says Dean.

He adds that they do have to work together to combine their individual strategies. “We throw a bit differently to each other, but we work with that. And we know exactly how the other throws which is great. We have slight differences but nothing too much that you can’t manage,” he says.

Lisenka Bomas of the Netherlands, who is also competing in the Championships with her father, Bob Bomas, [pictured above © WCF / Tom Rowland] also sees the advantages in playing with her parent. “I like playing with my father because I’m most comfortable with him. But we are players first on the ice and family elsewhere,” she says.

Bob agree to this, and says he believes in letting his daughter find her own way. “I can tell her the basics of curling but she has to see how it goes for herself. Each ice-sheet and each curl is different. And how a person deals with them is also not the same. So they have to find their own styles,” he says.

While each pair has a different approach to playing together, they agree that curling is a sport that is meant for family. “Curling is a gentleman’s sport and it’s all the values you want to put on to your kids in the end. We’ve made friends by travelling the world and meeting people from all over the world. That’s the kind of things you want to bring to your kids and let them experience it,” says Lynn.

“Curling is a sport where there is the possibility to play together, whether you’re a man and woman, father and daughter, or mother and son. In other sports like football and basketball there is no such option for it,” adds Bob.

As the teams both at the current Championships and various other events have shown, curling may well be considered a family sport.

Written by Sports Media Trainee, Dakshiani Palicha

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