World Men's Curling Championship 2012 - 1v2 Play-off

Canada progress directly to the gold medal game Photo: WCF/Richard Gray

It took an extra end, but Canada eventually took the direct route to Sunday’s final of the World Men’s Curling Championship in Basel, Switzerland when they beat Scotland by 7-6 in the Page one versus two play-off game.

Curling’s Page system gives Scotland a second chance to reach the final, but to do so they must beat third-place Sweden in the sole semi-final.

This was a tight game, fittingly played in front of the biggest crowd of the week - 2500 people. Canada blanked the first two ends before opening the scoring with a single point in the third end. Scotland’s Tom Brewster then responded with a draw for one point in the fourth end and then went into the half-time break 2-1 up, with a single steal of one point in the fifth end.

Canada levelled again with a single point in the sixth and in the seventh ends, Brewster drew again to score one point and re-take the lead, by 3-2. But in the eighth end, Canadian skip Glenn Howard played the shot of the match when he hit out two Scottish stones to score four points and take a 6-3 lead.

The Scots kept fighting and Brewster counted two points in the ninth end with a double take-out and then Howard had a shot to win the match in the tenth end, but his stone came up short, giving Scotland a steal of one point to level the game and force an extra end.

In this extra end, once again Howard had a straight forward draw-shot to win, and this time he made no mistake, coming nicely into the rings for one point and a 7-6 victory.

Afterwards, Howard said: “It was really good to win this one,” and, speaking about the eighth end he added: “we got an uncharacteristic miss out of Tom. We were looking at it and looking at it, and we ended up chiselling it and got four.”

More generally, Howard said: “We were pretty good in that game but I’d like to see us pick it up a bit. I don’t care if we curl 12%, as long as we win the game tomorrow. This is as far as we can be so far, we’re in the final, so we’ve made goal number three and so we’re right where we want to be.”

For his part, Scottish skip Brewster said: “That was just one end and apart from that one end, we played pretty well.”

The Scots now come back on against Sweden in the semi-final and Brewster is looking for a positive response from his team. He said: “We’ve got to bounce back tonight now. We need to try to get that out of our heads and come back fighting fit. If we just play the way we’re playing, we’ll be OK.”

1v2 Page Play-off: Scotland 6, Canada 7.

Standings after 1v2 Play-off
1. Canada 11-1 (qualified for Gold medal game)
2. Scotland 8-4 (to play semi-final)
3. Sweden 9-4 (to play semi-final)
4. Norway 8-4 (to play Bronze medal game)
5. New Zealand 7-5
6. China 6-5
7. Denmark 6-5
8. USA 4-7
9. Switzerland 3-8
10. France 3-8
11. Germany 2-9
12. Czech Republic 2-9

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