Team Murdoch Set To Sweep Into Action At World Championships
Olympic silver medallists Team Murdoch believe they have perfectly timed their return to the top of the game as they start their campaign at the Ford World Curling Championships in Edmonton which gets underway tomorrow (1-9 April).
Two time World Champion David Murdoch is pleased that his team is back where they want to be at a key moment in the curling calendar. They have a dual mission over the next nine days of qualifying Team GB for next year’s Winter Olympics, as well as representing Scotland at this World Champs and are seeking to put in a performance that will boost their own chances of going to PyeongChang in 2018.
“It feels good to be back at a World Championships. Things are going really well and we are in a good place,” said the 38 year old skip.
Murdoch was alternate for Team MacDonald at the 2015 Worlds, but before that it was 2013 since he and his team mates medalled, claiming a bronze. Since 2014, the Sochi medallists have taken on Canadian coach Ian Tetley in looking to re-discover their best form and winning the national championships again has helped to demonstrate that they are back on track.
“We didn’t achieve our curling goals over the last few years and as a result we broke down every aspect of our game,” said Murdoch.
“I have known Ian Tetley for some time – he is a three time world champion so brought a lot of experience and knowledge competing with and beating some of the best curling teams of all time.
“It took a year or so for him to get to know our system and to get to know the team to figure us out as individuals. It’s like introducing a new team member and we have certainly noticed a huge difference this year,” he said.
“He has made us think differently about things and is good at offering solutions. I think a good coach is there to offer ideas and support us and not to dictate and he has been great and helped us to improve.”
time Olympian Murdoch is about embark on his eighth World Championship campaign, having won the title in 2006 and 2009 but is heading to Edmonton with extra motivation this time around.
“I have been to seven world championships and it is always a tough field, that hasn’t changed from 2005 to 2017. This year there will be more professional teams. That is part and parcel of the Olympic process,” said Murdoch.
“For me having Grace my daughter has changed everything. Life is very different to the 10 years prior to her arrival. The primary focus was on me and me being selfish in order to get to the top and I have been very lucky to have the support of my wife and my family around me. Now I have to supply time and energy into this little person but at the same time she gives me a focus – I am now doing it for my family and not just me and having Grace has made me more relaxed – what will be, will be.”
Murdoch’s team of Greg Drummond, Scott Andrews and Michael Goodfellow are a tight unit both on and off the ice and they will be joined by Ross Paterson as their alternate, who plays for rivals Team Brewster but has played with Murdoch at a European Championships (in 2011).
“We are probably now at the peak of knowing each other really well and know how to get the best out of each other,” Murdoch observed.
“It is important for us to get to another Olympics, you wouldn’t do these four year cycles if you didn’t think it was obtainable. We are three years into the process and it is in our hands at this championship to get the qualification place. What happens after that who knows, but it is up to us to take advantage of this opportunity and showcase our skills and give it our best shot.”
For results from the Ford World Curling Championships please follow this link
PHOTO: Perthshire Picture Agency – Graeme Hart.