Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Winter Universiade

The countdown is on for the World Winter University Games in Erzurum, Turkey, early next year. British Curling is seeking expressions of interest from UK curling athletes who wish to be considered for the Great Britain World University Games men’s and women’s teams for the Universiade, January 26 - February 6, 2011, (see here).

Those interested should note that the expression of interest forms should be returned no later than next Wednesday, October 13, 2010.

Nancy Murdoch is the Head Coach for the Universiade.

Teams will be made up of individually selected athletes, and the criteria for selection is set out in considerable detail in the WUG information pack which has been made available. All selection matters will be the responsibility of a British Curling Selection Panel.

Head Coach, Nancy Murdoch, is Selector and Panel Chair. Her role is to lead the selection decision-making process; to provide technical input and assessment of athlete performance for men and women; to ensure appropriate recording of all selection information.

BC Performance Director, Derek Brown, is a Selector. His role is to contribute any relevant information to the selection process.

BC Board Representative, Hew Chalmers, has a role to oversee the proper conduct and due process of the selection process in an observational capacity only.

The competing countries have recently been confirmed. Based on performances at the Harbin Universiade and in the 2009 and 2010 World and World Junior Championships, the men's GB team is ranked fifth, and the women's team fourth. At least that's what is says in the athlete information pack. There appears to be a difference in what has been put up on the main competition website here, where the men appear to be ranked seventh. I'm sure it will all come out in the wash!

Anyway, the men's event has Sweden, Norway, China, Korea, Switzerland, Canada, Great Britain, USA, Czech Republic and Turkey. The following countries will compete in the women's event: China, Canada, Russia, Great Britain, Czech Republic, Korea, Japan, USA, Germany and Turkey.

I understand from talking to Brian Gray and the Turkish curlers who competed recently at Greenacres that the curling facility at Erzurum is nearing completion, and that there is to be a trial event there soon. More when I learn details.