Scottish Teams for 2011 Euro Championships Confirmed
Following four days of high-quality competitive action in Scottish curling’s European Qualifying event in Perth, the teams that will represent Scotland at the 2011 Le Gruyere European Curling Championships, being held in Moscow, Russia in December, have now been confirmed.
And the Scottish squad will be a real family affair, with women’s skip Eve Muirhead being joined by brother Glen as a member of the men’s team, and her father Gordon, who is coach to her team. The women’s team includes the Adams sisters Vicki, playing second, and alternate Kay.
The men’s qualifying event went down to the last stone of a best-of-three play-off between Aberdeen’s Tom Brewster, current Scottish champion and world silver medallist, and Lockerbie’s two-time world champion David Murdoch, and Murdoch’s precision final draw-shot gave his team the narrowest of victories.
Murdoch, who has won the European title three times previously (2003, Italy; 2007, Germany; 2008, Sweden), leads a new team this year and, for Moscow, they are: lead Richard Woods, second Ross Paterson, third Glen Muirhead, alternate David Edwards, coached by David Ramsay.
In the women’s event, four-time world junior champion Eve Muirhead, representing Perth, went through her eight game programme undefeated. In the final she beat the Kilmarnock-based team normally skipped by Sarah Reid, but, in a cruel twist, illness had forced Reid to withdraw and despite the valiant efforts of stand-in skip Kerry Barr, Muirhead gained two successive victories to seal selection.
Muirhead’s team in Moscow will be: lead Claire Hamilton, second Vicki Adams, third Anna Sloan and alternate Kay Adams, with Muirhead’s father Gordon – himself a world silver medallist – as team coach. Last year, Muirhead led a different team to European silver medals in Switzerland.
The 2011 Le Gruyere European Championships will take place between the 2nd and 10th December, and will be staged in the impressive ‘Sports Palace Megasport’, a unique new multi-ice sport venue in Moscow, with seating for 14,000.
The Scottish teams will be supported by Tullis Russell Papermakers on their quest to capture the European Curling titles in Moscow.
Report by Mike Haggerty and images courtesy of Brad Askew.