Monday, November 08, 2010

At the bottom of the mountain

A little over eighteen months ago David Murdoch was celebrating as World Curling Champion skip. Last week he was competing, with substitute James Grattan at third, and new front end Ross Hepburn and Glen Muirhead, in the World Cup of Curling in Windsor, Ontario. His record? Played five, won none!

I was thinking to myself that David would not be too happy with that, and stumbled across this article by Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star.

In it, David says, “It’s very humbling. You have to grind your teeth quite a lot. It’s not what I’m used to. We’re trying to develop these guys and you have to take it on the chin. You get back down to the bottom of the mountain and you have to start climbing back up again.”

One new partnership that does seem to be working out well is that between Lauren Gray and Jennifer Dodds (above). Having been rivals last season, they teamed up this year as skip and third, together with Tasha Aitken and Caitlin Barr as the front end. Last weekend they lost the final of the London Junior Cashspiel and this weekend they got to the final of the OVCA Junior SuperSpiel, with five straight wins. The Scots then completed the perfect run with one more victory, 7-6, over Katie Lindsay's Toronto side. Well done to all the team!

Hannah Fleming's side won three and lost three and was one win away from getting to the playoffs of the event, through the C Road. In the junior men's competition Ally Fraser won two of five games.

In Kitchener, Jay McWilliam's team lost one game in their section. That put them into the B event, where they made the final before losing out. (The team's take on it is here). John Penny and his team lost two section games, to put them into the C event, which they won.

Eve Muirhead and her team were in Alberta for the Red Deer Curling Classic. They won their first two games, then lost two in a row to drop into the C Road. There they won two more, including a win over Cheryl Bernard's Olympic Silver medalists, before losing out, just one game away from a place in the playoffs.

Photo of Lauren and Jennifer is © Skip Cottage and was taken at the Kinross Junior Classic.