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2017 European Curling Championships
#1
A total of 27 countries will take part across the men’s and women’s “A” and “B” divisions with medals, promotion, world championship qualification and crucial Olympic momentum all at stake. Play starts on Saturday 18th November with round-robin play continuing throughout the week at St. Gallen’s Eissportzentrum Lerchenfield, with semi-finals scheduled for Thursday 23rd and Friday 24th November. The world challenge games and showpiece finals will conclude the event on Saturday 25th November.

The ten “A” Division men’s teams that will compete are: Austria, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Scotland, Slovakia, Sweden, and Switzerland. The top 7 teams will automatically qualify their nations for the 2018 World Curling Championships in Las Vegas, USA with the 8th placed team facing a best of 3 play-off against the winner of the B Division for the last place.

For Scotland, Kyle Smith's team return to the European Championships for the second time after their debut in 2015 in Esbjerg, Denmark. The team features skip Kyle Smith, and his brother Cameron at lead, while alternate Glen Muirhead joins his brother Thomas, who plays at third, in the line-up. Kyle Waddell is second player for the Scots, who are coached by Viktor Kjäll.
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The teams in the women’s “A” Division are: Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Russia, Scotland, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.
Scotland is represented by Eve Muirhead, third Anna Sloan, second player Vicki Adams, lead Lauren Gray along with alternate Kelly Schafer and coach Glenn Howard. The Scottish women are no stranger to European medals. A bronze medal at last season’s European Championships was the seventh consecutive medal won by both Eve and Anna and a sixth in a row for the rest of the team. With a sole European title coming in 2011, Eve's team will be looking for improvement.

From these Championships, the eight women’s teams for the World Women’s Curling Championship in Thunder Bay, Canada next March will be decided in the same fashion as the Men's teams.

Saturday
MEN - Scotland v Italy and Austria v Scotland
WOMEN - Sweden v Scotland
Sunday
MEN - Russia v Scotland
WOMEN - Russia v Scotland and Scotland v Denmark

Featured in the B Division are England Women comprising of Lisa Farnell (skip), third Sara Jahodova (vice-skip), second Victoria Kyle and lead Niamh Fenton. They are coached by Jamie Farnell.
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The English Men's team is Andrew Woolston (skip), third Ben Fowler (vice-skip), second Scott Gibson and lead Fraser Clark backed up by alternate James Whittle. Their coach is Ken Horton.
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The Men are joined by Wales who are represented by James Pougher (skip), third Rhys Phillips (vice-skip), second Garry Coombs and lead Andrew Tanner with alternate Simon Pougher.
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Saturday
MEN - Wales v Poland and Hungary v England
WOMEN - England v Latvia
Sunday
MEN - France v Wales, Wales v Czech Republic and England v Belgium
WOMEN - England v Estonia and Poland v England

I've just discovered that there will be live coverage of some games on Eurosport 1 and 2.

Sat 18 Nov 0900-1200 Men - Norway v Russia (EUROSPORT 2)
Sun 19 Nov 0900-1200 Women - Switzerland v Germany (EUROSPORT 2)
Mon 20 Nov 0800-1100 Men - Germany v Scotland (EUROSPORT 1)

The above times are Central European Time so you can add or subtract as you think fit. Confused
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#2
Nice one, ritchie. Will try to catch a bit of this on Eurosport. Thumb up
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#3
Today's results are:-

A Division
MEN - Scotland 7 Italy 3 and Austria 3 Scotland 7.
WOMEN - Sweden 5 Scotland 2.
The men started off with two comfortable wins against "lesser" teams. Having said that the Scots played near the top of their game. Unfortunately the women slipped up against the current European Silver medallists, losing a 3 in the 5th end after 4 blank ends - game over at this level.

The major shock in the Women's competition was provided by newcomers Turkey who beat current European champions Russia. Although Russia were well ahead in the percentage stakes, they failed on the vital shots towards the end of the game, losing 3 of the last 4 ends.

B Division
MEN - Wales 4 Poland 7 and Hungary 9 England 6.
WOMEN - England 5 Latvia 6.
Both Men's teams had good, close game, but were behind all the way to the end. The English Women had particularly bad luck losing at the last end after being level in the 2nd, 4th, 7th and 9th ends.
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#4
Ritchie, any chance of medals for any of the home nations?
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#5
Sunday's results
A Division
MEN - Russia 3 Scotland 5
WOMEN - Russia 7 Scotland 8 (after an extra end) and Scotland 6  Denmark 1
The Scottish Men lead the Division with 3 wins from 3 games beside Switzerland and Sweden while the Women bring themselves back into contention.

B Division
MEN - France 11 Wales 4, Wales 1 Czech Republic 11 (the scores tell their own story) and England 6 Belgium 5 (despite England scoring in only 3 of the 10 ends)
WOMEN - England 5 Estonia 8 (England lost a 4 at the second last end while leading 5-4) and Poland 1 England 10 (Poland scored first and then conceded after only 7 ends)

SCO - The only team with a real chance of a medal are the Scottish Women who have won 1 Gold, 4 Silver and 2 Bronze in the last 7 Championships. The Scottish Men have a slim chance, being behind Sweden, Norway and Switzerland in the betting. Having said that they will be representing GB in the Winter Olympics, so will be out to prove their worth. Unfortunately England and Wales will be doing well if they win more than half of their games.

Monday's Games
A Division
MEN - Germany v Scotland and Scotland v Slovakia
WOMEN - Scotland v Italy and Germany v Scotland
B Division
MEN - England v Finland and Wales v Denmark
WOMEN - Norway v England and England v Netherlands
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#6
Monday's Results
A Division
MEN - Germany 6 Scotland 4 (the Scots scoring in only 2 ends) and Scotland 8 Slovakia 1 (only 6 ends played before Slovakia conceded with their lead player having a 100% game)
WOMEN - Scotland 8 Italy 1 (another 6-end game) and Germany 5 Scotland 8 (Scotland were 6-0 up after 3 ends and Vicki Adams played the perfect 100% game with 20 takeouts)
Switzerland lead the Men's Division with 5 wins and Norway, Scotland and Sweden share second place with 4 wins. For the Women, 4 teams have opened up a gap at the top of the table. Sweden lead with 5 wins with Italy, Scotland and Switzerland on 4 wins.

B Division
MEN - England 3 Finland 5 and Wales 9 Denmark 2 (Danish concession after only 6 ends)
WOMEN - Norway 8 England 4 and England 6 Netherlands 7 (after an extra end)
Each of the home nations has registered just 1 win so far.

Tuesday's games
A Division
MEN - Scotland v Sweden and Norway v Scotland - two vitally important games for the Scots, probably determining whether or not they stay in the running for a last-four place.
WOMEN - Turkey v Scotland
B Division
MEN - Israel v England and Slovenia v Wales
WOMEN - Spain v England and England v Lithuania

For the British TV audience here are the live games for the next 3 days (CET)
Tue 21 Nov 1400-1700 Women - Denmark v Germany (EUROSPORT 2)
Wed 22 Nov 1400-1700 Men - Norway v Sweden (EUROSPORT 2)
Thu 23 Nov 0900-1200 Men - Sweden v Switzerland (EUROSPORT 1)

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Niamh Fenton of England, courtesy of me nicking it from the WCF Facebook page. Smile
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#7
Tuesday's results
A Division
MEN - Scotland 4 Sweden 5 (again Scotland scored in only 2 of the 10 ends - Sweden scored thrice and there were 5 blank ends) and Norway 7 Scotland 8 (after an extra end)
WOMEN - Turkey 3 Scotland 8
After two extremely tight games, the Scottish Men are hanging in there with 5 wins, the same as Norway. Switzerland have qualified with 7 wins and Sweden are 2nd on 6 wins.
The Scottish Women lie in 2nd place and are virtually guaranteed a last-four place, needing only 1 more win from 3 games. Sweden have already qualified with 6 wins, Scotland and Switzerland have 5 wins and Italy have 4 wins.

B Division
MEN - Israel 3 England 2 (an unusually low score, going against England in the last end) and Slovenia 4 Wales 7 (Wales scored 3 in the first end to take control)
WOMEN - Spain 2 England 8 (England dominated throughout) and England 9 Lithuania 6 (after being level with 1 end to play)
England's Men's team now need to win all their remaining 3 games and depend on Spain, Israel and Hungary losing theirs. Wales can theoretically qualify as well, being only 1 win behind 3rd placed France and Turkey.
The English Women have now won 3 games and are still in with a decent chance of qualifying. Latvia, Norway and Estonia have qualified with 4 teams vying for the 4th spot - Finland, England, Spain and Netherlands.

Wednesday's games
A Division
MEN - Scotland v Switzerland (another vital game but Norway play against Sweden, so they could still be in the top four going into the last game on Thursday no matter what)
WOMEN - Scotland v Czech Republic and Scotland v Switzerland
B Division
MEN - Estonia v England, England v Spain and Lithuania v Wales
WOMEN - Belarus v England and England v Finland
I would say that all the B Division games tomorrow are winnable for the home nations with the most important ones in bold type.
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#8
More pictures gleaned from the WCF Facebook page and photographers Richard Gray, Celine Stucki and Eakin Howard

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Kyle Smith (Scotland)

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Lauren Gray and Vicki Adams (Scotland)

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Fraser Clark and Scott Gibson (I think) (England)

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Andrew Tanner, Jamie Pougher, Garry Coombes and a totally blurred Rhys Phillips (Wales)

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England Women after their victory over Spain
Niamh Fenton, Sara Jahodova, Victoria Kyle and Lisa Farnell
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#9
Wednesday's results
A Division
MEN - Scotland 4 Switzerland 9 (Scotland fell away in the second half of the game, being outscored by 8 shots to 2 in the last 5 ends)
WOMEN - Scotland 8 Czech Republic 4 (Scotland were ahead all the way and ran out comfortable winners) and Scotland 7 Switzerland 9 (after an extra end)
The Men are still hanging in there despite today's defeat as they lie 3rd equal on 5 wins with Germany and Norway behind the already qualified Switzerland and Sweden. Netherlands are right behind on 4 wins, making tomorrow's game doubly important. To make it more interesting, Germany play Norway tomorrow, meaning only one of them can move ahead of Scotland.
The Women won the game they needed to make sure of qualification alongwith Sweden and Switzerland. Italy beat Denmark 6-5 after an extra end tonight to clinch the 4th qualification spot.

B Division
MEN - Estonia 6 England 7 (after an extra end), England 6 Spain 9 (England were always chasing the game under pressure) and Lithuania 6 Wales 4 (as above they were always behind)
WOMEN - Belarus 7 England 4 (England were 1 up after 7 ends but lost 4 shots over the next 2 ends) and England 8 Finland 6 (England ahead all the way against one of the qualifiers)
In the Men's competition England are on 2 wins out of 6 games with 1 still to play and have no chance of progressing. Similarly Wales have 2 wins out of 6 and have exactly the same chance.
The English Women's defeat to Belarus, coupled with Finland's win over Spain, at lunchtime meant that the 4 qualifiers were guaranteed to be Norway, Estonia, Latvia and Finland with only pride at stake in their final game. They finished an agonising 1 win behind Finland in 5th place beside Spain on 4 wins out of 9 games.

Thursday's games
A Division
MEN - Scotland v Netherlands
WOMEN - Hungary v Scotland
The Semi-finals consist of 1st v 4th and 2nd v 3rd. The Men play on Thursday evening and the Women play on Friday afternoon.

B Division
MEN - Wales v Turkey and England v Latvia
Thursday evening features Men's qualifying games where 2nd place in Group A (England's Group) plays 3rd place in Group B (Wales' Group) and the 3rd place in Group A plays 2nd place in Group B to qualify for Friday morning's Semi-final.  The Women's Semi-finals are also played on Thursday evening.
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#10
Thursday's results
A Division
MEN - Scotland 5 Netherlands 2 (Scotland controlled the second half of a very tight, high quality game keeping last stone by blanking 4 consecutive ends until the very last, scoring 2 with a takeout with the last stone, when Netherlands were lying shot)
WOMEN - Hungary 3 Scotland 9 (While not at their best the Scots controlled the game, finishing with 4 shots in the 8th and final end)
Everything fell into place for the Scottish Men this morning. They won, Norway beat Germany and Netherlands lost their game, leaving Sweden, Switzerland, Scotland and Norway as the 4 Semi-finalists. Things got even better in the Semi-final against Switzerland, with the Scots having last stone on the last end, scoring 2 shots to win 9-8 with a 2 perfect draw shots. Sweden had an easier game against Norway, winning 8-3.Both today's games went right to the wire, with Kyle Smith playing high pressure shots for the vital wins and guaranteeing Scotland a Medal - a great performance.

B Division
MEN - Wales 4 Turkey 10 (Even though Wales scored end for end they were outscored each time) and England 3 Latvia 6 (England were in the game up to the 5th end, but lost the next 3 ends)
Wales finished with 2 wins out of 7 games to finish 6th in Group B and England had exactly the same playing record but managed to finish 5th in Group A. Very disappointing, but perhaps not a big surprise.

A Division
Friday's games
MEN - Bronze Medal Game - Norway v Switzerland
WOMEN - Semi-finals - Scotland v Switzerland and Italy v Sweden, then the Bronze Medal Game at night
Saturday's games
MEN - Gold Medal Game - Scotland v Sweden
WOMEN - Gold Medal Game

B Division
Friday's games
MEN - Semi-finals - Czech Republic v Finland and Spain v Poland, with both Medal Games in the afternoon
WOMEN - Semi-finals - Finland v Latvia and Norway v Estonia, with both Medal Games in the afternoon
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