Mouat and Aitken Retain Scottish Mixed Doubles Crown
Dewars Centre (Perth) was the venue for this season’s Scottish Mixed Doubles Championship from 13th – 15th December. Seventeen teams set out to lay claim to the title and the opportunity to represent Scotland at the World Mixed Doubles Championship.
Teams Whyte, Hamilton, McCleary, Mouat, Duff and Shedden progressed to the quarter final stages after the initial section games. Teams Marshall and Sloan joined them by virtue of winning 4 end tiebreak games.
The quarter finals saw John Hamilton and Kerry Barr lose out to Team McCleary, reigning champions Team Mouat progress past Graeme Shedden and Claire Sloan in a repeat of last year’s final, Team Duff overcome Kirsty Sloan and Zack Stewart and Team Whyte squeeze past Stuart and Jennifer Marshall in an extra end thriller.
In the first of the semi-finals, Team McCleary stormed to a 5 shot lead before John Duff and Lesley Young got on the board with a 2 in the fourth end. Team McCleary continued to dominate in the second half and progressed to the final with an 11-2 victory. In the other semi- final Team Mouat raced to a 5-1 lead after 5 ends but the Dumfries Duo of Ruaridh and Naomi Whyte pulled them back to 5-4 after taking 1 in the 6th and stealing 2 in the 7th. Team Mouat held on and secured 1 point in the 8th end to progress to the final.
The final saw reigning Champions Bruce Mouat and Gina Aitken, take on the 2011/12 Champions Lee and Judith McCleary. At the half way stage the game was tied 2-2, each team having taken and stolen 1’s. Team McCleary edged ahead in the fifth end by taking 1. Team Mouat piled on the pressure in the sixth end but failed to take advantage with a missed split attempt for 3, scoring only 1 to tie the game again. As the seventh end progressed Team McCleary lay shot amongst a number of stones tightly packed in the four foot circle after great freezes from Gina and Judith. With four stones to play, Team Mouat opted for a guard in an attempt to restrict their opposition scoring more than 1. The gamble paid off when Lee McCleary failed with a raise take out attempt and only scored 1 to take a one shot lead. The Murrayfield pair controlled the final end and left Lee needing to play a perfect freeze with his last stone to try and restrict the to scoring a single but unfortunately his effort was a little light and he gave up a score of 3 and the title.
Congratulations to Bruce Mouat and Gina Aitken on retaining the Scottish Mixed Doubles Championship who will be given the opportunity to represent Scotland on home soil at the World Mixed Doubles Championship in Dumfries, Scotland, from 22nd – 29th April 2014.
Pictured: Bruce Mouat, Gina Aitken and Alan Durno (RCCC President)