HOSTS SCOTLAND SECURE SEMI FINAL PLACE AT WORLD WHEELCHAIR CURLING CHAMPS
Hosts Scotland are through to the semi finals at the World Wheelchair Curling Championships in Stirling, after beating Slovakia 7-6 in their extra end play-off.
Scotland looked to be in the driving seat and were leading 6-2 by the sixth end, however Slovakia claimed a three at the next which exerted pressure on the hosts for the first time in the game. The Scots rose to the challenge and with last stone advantage at the extra end after their opponents secured a single steal at the 8th to level the match, skip Aileen Neilson said she felt confident that they could secure another victory, despite having lost out to Slovakia when they met in the round robin stage of the tournament.
Neilson, competing in her ninth world championships said after the crucial win to get them a stage closer to the medal matches: “We were totally in control and after the half time break we knew we had to keep that pressure on and it was disappointing to give up that three, but we showed our determination and resilience and we didn’t let that bother us. They played well and I had a few misses, but we came out fighting.
“It’s wheelchair curling, you don’t necessarily make every shot and if we do miss something we have the mental capacity to park it, move on and keep fighting.
“I will go to an extra end anytime provided I can come out with a win and the guys all played so well and for me to just have to put a guard on at the end of that match to secure that win really shows how well they set things up and we are all absolutely delighted to come through that.
“To be in a home world championships and to be in the semi finals now feels absolutely fantastic,” Neilson said.
British Curling’s Head Wheelchair Coach Sheila Swan said: “That was maybe a bit tighter than we would have liked but I am delighted with the outcome and we now have two chances to take home a medal.
“I guess that game is what we have seen all week, great come-backs as everyone is tenacious at this level with a strong fighting spirit. Now we are into the semis you are always going to be playing great teams at a major championships and anything could happen against Norway tonight, so fingers crossed for a Scottish win tonight,” she added.
Korea beat Switzerland 10-2 in just six ends in the other play-off match and they will now face Paralympic champions China in their semi final at 7pm tonight.
Results after the round robin: 7W 4L
Scotland v Switzerland 4-5
Scotland v Latvia 7-8
Scotland v Germany 9-7 (EE)
Scotland v Norway 7-4
Scotland v Korea 7-6
Scotland v China 3-7
Scotland v USA 7-6
Scotland v Slovakia 5-9
Scotland v Russia 5-4
Scotland v Estonia 9-3
Scotland v Canada 5-3
Scotland v Slovakia 7-6 (EE)
Ticket prices are £6 for Saturday’s knockout Semi Finals and £10 for Sunday’s Bronze and Gold medal matches.
For information on accessible seating please contact Box Office on 01786 473 544 / 274 000.
All tickets can be bought at: https://culturestirling.org/world-wheelchair-curling-championships/
You can follow the build-up and results of the World Wheelchair Curling Championship on Twitter, Instagram (@worldcurling | @wwhcc2019) and Facebook (/WorldCurlingFederation | /wwhcc19) and by searching the hashtags #WWhCC2019 #curling
Aileen Neilson (skip) – 47yrs, born East Kilbride, lives Strathaven
David Melrose – 52yrs, born Haddington, lives Duns
Robert McPherson – 50yrs, born Motherwell, lives Bellshill
Hugh Nibloe – 37yrs, born Stranraer, lives Stranraer
Gary Logan – 47yrs, born Berwick-upon-Tweed, lives Cornhil on Tweed, Northumberland
Pics: WCF - Tom Rowland