Brewster Pips Murdoch In All Scottish Final In Japan As Smith Claims Victory On Home Ice
Team Brewster have won the Karuizawa International, snatching a 4-3 victory at the last end of an all Scottish final against defending champions Team Murdoch to complete an impressive six match winning run on their debut at the event.
The Scottish champions had won four pool matches to top the rankings, earning a place in the semi-final which they came through 7-6 against world number nine ranked Canadians Team Morris while Murdoch’s men were cruising to a 7-2 win over the host nation’s Team Morozumi.
The final was another great battle between the Scottish friends and rivals, Brewster starting with the hammer and the scoring restricted to singles at three ends before Murdoch gained the upper hand by registering a two at the sixth to move 3-2 in front. After a blanked seventh end, however, it was Brewster’s turn to claim a two at the last to win both the match and the title.
Skip Tom Brewster said: “We have had a great time here in Japan and the result just tops it off. The team has played great all week.
“Since the Europeans we have been working on a number of things and it’s great to see all that effort has paid off. “
Ross Paterson who plays second for Team Brewster echoed his skip’s sentiment: “It is a great bounce back after the disappointment of the Europeans and delighted to go into the new year on a high note.”
Speaking of the team’s reaction to their first time in Japan, Glen Muirhead paid tribute to: “A fantastic country with fantastic helpful people and the facility and arena was top drawer and organisation very professional.”
However he was even more pleased with the way the team had been rewarded for the way it prepared for this event.
“A lot of hard work has gone into maximising our potential and it goes to show that a good work ethic will win us many games,” said Muirhead.
“We were resilient and professional throughout which has helped us to maintain our peak performances at all times. We enjoyed every minute of the competition, this element is crucial to keep at the fore.
“We would love to come back to Japan again and this win for us is a welcome reward for our hard efforts in 2016 and a welcome break awaits us when we return home.”
With a one and two finish for the Scots in the men’s tournament, Glen’s sister Eve and colleagues Anna Sloan, Vicki Adams and Lauren Gray claimed third place in the women’s event as they, too, made their debut at Karuizawa.
Team Muirhead won all of their pool matches but missed out 7-5 in the semi final to Team Sigfridsson, before beating Russian quartet Team Sidorova 5-3 to finish third.
On home soil there was also success for the youngest of the Muirhead siblings Thomas – who plays third for Team Smith – when they won the Dumfries Challenger Series at Dumfries Ice bowl beating fellow Scots Team Bryce 4-3 in the final.
Skip Kyle Smith said: “It was good to get a competition in Scotland and we played pretty well over the three days.
“We are pleased with how the season is going so far, we have been playing well on tour and climbing the rankings has been important for us.
“Going into the second half of the season we know what we need to do and we feel happy with where we are and if we make slight improvements across the board we are confident we will achieve what we set out to do.”
Team Smith Coach Viktor Kjell said of their victory: “Another great performance from the team.
“Coming in as very heavy favourites for the weekend it was good that they executed their plans so well and got through the tournament undefeated. It’s been a terrific first half of the season. They have gained a lot of experience from playing against the best teams in the world, making a final at a Grand Slam and two tour tournament victories.
“All this puts us in the top 15 in the world and I’m happy with how the team has performed as individuals and as a unit.
“Now we get a few days off over Christmas, then back to camp in Braehead just before New Year’s Eve, then we start the second half of the season with the Canadian Open in North Battleford (3-8 January).”
Team Jackson finished runners up in the women’s event at Dumfries whilst there was another strong finish from Team Fleming who also finished the year on a high as finalists of the Qinghai China Women’s International.
For results from Japan please click here.
For results from Dumfries please click here.
Team Brewster Photos: Perthshire Picture Agency - Graeme Hart.
Team Smith photo (below): Tom J Brydone.