Eve Muirhead Discusses The Upcoming World Junior Curling Championships
‘It’s where I learnt everything; that’s where I started curling…’
(Photo Credit: Team GB)
Skip Eve Muirhead talks to us about the upcoming World Junior Curling Championships, in Aberdeen, as her Team prepare to take on the best curlers from across the Globe at the Winter Olympics.
In less than a week, Team Muirhead will be facing teams from around the world, in Pyeonchang, South Korea; the eyes of the world upon them. Team GB aim to bring home 5 Olympic and 7 Paralympic medals – for Eve, Anna, Vicky and Lauren, improving upon the bronze earned in Sochi in 2014 would certainly be a career highlight. We caught up with the team a few weeks ago to talk about another international event; this time staged on home soil. The World Junior Curling Championships 2018 come to Aberdeen, 3rd – 10th of March, with Teams Morrison and Whyte representing Scotland in the Women’s and Men’s competitions respectively. The Championships are the second of four events Scotland is hosting – and culminating in the World Wheelchair Curling Championships in 2019 and the World Men’s Championships in Glasgow in 2020.
(Photo Credit: Team GB)
Eve Muirhead won the World Junior Curling Championship last time it was hosted in Scotland, in Perth 2011; and using the event to get more people hooked on curling is something that’s close to her heart:
So, what does the World Juniors mean to you personally?
‘The World Juniors for me of course is a tournament with so many great memories, having won the World Juniors four times is something pretty special; that’s where I started curling, that’s where I learnt everything, that’s where I started playing a lot of the guys I still play today, that’s what made me a strong player coming into the ladies’ ranks. If anyone gets the chance to play a World Juniors, or even to go along to one it’s something that really strengthens your career going forward, for me it put the foundations down.’
Do you think holding the Championship on home ice will boost curling across Scotland?
‘I think for sure, whenever Scotland can host an international event we need to really make the most of it, especially in curling we always try and get as many young people involved in the sport as we can. As an athlete I guess what I can do is to try to keep winning medals, to keep performing on a world stage, to get the sport more publicity. Making the most of these big International events, by getting as many people along to support as we can, hopefully that will increase interest in people taking it up and getting to championship level. We really need to get on top of it, and get as many people through the doors as possible.’
The whole team agree staging a well-attended championships would raise the profile of the sport in Scotland. Anna Sloan, from Lockerbie, plays 3rd for Team Muirhead ‘We had the World Junior Champs in Perth in 2011, and still to this day that is one of the highlights of my career. It’s just something you can’t explain until you experience it. You feel like you have that edge, that extra little bit of extra support, which means to world to us.’
Paul Bush OBE, VisitScotland’s Director of Events, said:
‘Next month’s World Junior Curling Championships in Aberdeen is not only a wonderful opportunity to catch the next generation of curling stars but as Eve said it is great opportunity for all the aspiring elite curlers to experience what it’s like to compete as a team in an international environment. It is particularly exciting to be hosting the World Junior Championships during Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018, as we celebrate the inspiring talents and contributions of young people across the country.’
‘As the home of curling, Scotland is perfect stage for international curling events and EventScotland is proud to be support the World Junior Curling Championships, the second of four curling events taking place in Scotland between 2016 and 2020.’
Bruce Crawford, CEO Scottish Curling says:
‘Scottish Curling along with our principal partners at EventScotland, Aberdeen City Council and Johnston Carmichael, along with the host club Curl Aberdeen and a great squad of volunteers have been working on this event for more than a year. We all look forward to welcoming the visiting teams from abroad as well as getting behind team Scotland’s young men and women 3-10 March 2018. We are working with our partners to create a legacy for the club and local community and hope to inspire more people of all ages to try curling in 2018.’