Team Smith Reach Their First Grand Slam Final
Scotland’s Team Smith have provided the latest evidence of their burgeoning potential with another exceptional performance which saw them earn the right to meet Team Edin in the first ever all-European final of a men’s Grand Slam event in Canada on Sunday.
Having won a tournament on Canadian ice - the OCT Oakville Classic - and beaten Niklas Edin’s Swedish rink already this season, reaching the final of one of the sport’s most prestigious tournaments in just their second appearance at this level was another stunning achievement.
In the end they were beaten 7-3 in the final of the Grand Slam of Curling Tournament staged in Cranbrook, British Columbia, by the current form team on the international circuit, their opponents having, only two weeks earlier, become the first non-Canadians to win a men’s Grand Slam event. However their coach Viktor Kjall, a former member of Edin’s team, was delighted with their week’s work.
”It has been an impressive week from the entire team and they played with confidence, determination and exactly executed their game plan,” he said.
“This result also shows that all of the hard work they put in early season is still paying off.
“It is an incredible performance from such a young team competing in their second slam to reach a final and it is one of the biggest achievements in Grand Slam history.
“At the moment they can beat any team in the world but they still have to work hard if they want to break into the top ten in the world.
“Many of the teams we play at the Slams have competed in 20, 30 or 40 slams each, so this achievement on their second competitive outing this week is even more special.
Kjall concluded: “As a coach I am very proud of the boys, they showed no fear and proved to the curling world that they belong at the top. Regarding Niklas’ team, they are playing some great curling now and were very tough opponents. Many teams including Team Smith have a lot to learn from them.”
Team Edin will be the team to beat as they begin the defence of their title this week at the European Championships in Braehead (19-26 November), whilst Thomas Muirhead, who plays third for Team Smith, Scotland’s standard bearers at last year’s Europeans, will revert to supporting his siblings as sister Eve leads the Scottish women and brother Glen plays third for Team Brewster.
Kyle Smith (Perth)
Thomas Muirhead (Blair Atholl)
Kyle Waddell (Hamilton)
Cammy Smith (Perth)
Pictured Team Smith and Coach Viktor Kjall (centre). Photo: Tom J Brydone.