Live Blog: Day one at the WWCC
God natt from Sweden
If today’s action didn’t whet your appetite for more curling, then we’re not sure what will!
Come join us tomorrow for 12 games across three sessions at the Göransson Arena. Until then, we say god natt, sharing the standings after two sessions of play.
Have a look at the standings after Day 1 at the #WWCC2023#Curling pic.twitter.com/dnwUAmuGUB
— World Curling (@worldcurling) March 18, 2023
Session two results
As first day go at a LGT World Women’s Curling Championship, that was pretty epic. Let’s do some tidying up and take a look at session two’s results…
Einarson: A big win for us
How about that? Canada look thrilled – and so they should be. Let’s hear from skip Kerri Einarson on her rink’s triumph over Olympic champions Team Anna Hasselborg.
“We had some shots that didn’t go our way but we caught onto the ice quite well to put some pressure on them,” said the Manitoban.
“It’s a big win for us. We wanted to start off with a good win. We put a lot of pressure on them in the final ends and made some clutch shots.”
And how are Team Einarson enjoying their time in Sweden?
“We love it. We keep waking up every morning and say ‘can we move here?’ – it’s so beautiful.”
Canada steal and win
We’ve said how topsy-turvy it has been between Sweden and Canada throughout – but Canada have just produced a terrific come-from-behind victory.
Kerri Einarson’s excellent double take-out with her final stone left opposite number, Anna Hasselborg, no choice but to draw for an extra end. Unfortunately for the hosts, it falls short and Canada register a steal of four. It’ll go down as a 9-4 win but it couldn’t have been closer.
A massive four-ender from Scotland secures an opening-day victory for Rebecca Morrison’s rink, beating Germany 12-5 in nine ends. That’ll give her team a confidence boost going into day two.
“It was brilliant. We couldn’t have got off to a better start – it helped to calm the nerves a wee bit,” said Morrison, after grabbing a win on debut at a world championship.
“We are so excited – especially after missing out last year. It was really fun to be out there.”
The two-time Scottish champions will be back tomorrow morning to face Denmark.
Before this session kicked off, we were treated to a special opening ceremony which included a live performance of the event’s official song by Alva Brodin, as well as the traditional ceremonial first stone being thrown by the local mayor, Peter Karnstrom.
Here are some terrific pictures taken by our world-class photographers, Stephen Fisher and Jeffrey Au…
It’s an incredibly tight affair between hosts Sweden and Canada right now. After trading singles over the first six ends, Anna Hasselborg’s rink accrued an all-important two points in the seventh end.
They lead Kerri Einarson’s Canada side 4-3 with two ends remaining. It’s too close to call (as expected) between these two sides – which know each other very well.
Well played by Shannon Birchard 🇨🇦 who makes the raise take-out and rolls out onto the wing to lie shot behind cover. 👏
Watch live on the Curling Channel at https://t.co/fy3vfdBx89#WWCC2023 #curling pic.twitter.com/jSkPSvKcGK
— World Curling (@worldcurling) March 18, 2023
Have you downloaded the app?
There’s so many ways you can follow all the action at the LGT World Women’s Curling Championship 2023. Aside from this live blog, our fantastic social media channels, all of the games on the Curling Channel, our online features and much more, there’s also an app you can download.
Click the links below for more information…
Constantini: We're proud of ourselves
After Italy’s 12-1 victory over Türkiye, here’s their skip’s post-match reaction: “We are really proud of ourselves. We got off to a great start and enjoyed a really good game,” said Italy skip Stefania Constantini.
“Our first end was important to create an advantage. After then, it was crucial to keep the gap.
“The first game is always about understanding the ice – which is fantastic. It’s curling really well and super fast, which is perfect for us.”
W for Italy
Italy follow suit as they begin their Sandviken campaign wonderfully.
Six ends is all it takes for Stefania Constantini and co to beat Türkiye, triumphing 12-1 on sheet B. They’ll be back to face Korea bright and early tomorrow morning. Surely an espresso (or two) will be ordered at breakfast.
We’ll hear from the Olympic gold medallist shortly…
Switzerland can go back to their hotel rooms tonight pretty satisfied with two wins from as many games today. While their opening-session encounter was close, they’ve had a more comfortable second match as they defeated Japan 11-2 in six ends.
Here’s what skip Silvana Tirinzoni had to say about their perfect 2-0 record from day one.
“We played two tough teams and we expect them to be around next weekend,” said the Swiss skip. “We’re pretty happy.
“This morning we were a little shaky but tonight we showed a really good display.”
Sometimes statistics can paint a decent picture of a match-up – but as the Canada-Sweden affair showcases, it’s the score that matters…
Scores on the doors
Those first five ends have flown past in an instance – so there’s no better time to take a look at the scoreboards…
Germany 3-6 Scotland
Italy 9-1 Türkiye
Switzerland 10-2 Japan
Canada 2-2 Sweden
After back-to-back steals from Scotland in ends two and three, Germany really needed that score of three to put them back into the contest. They now trail 5-3 after four ends but there’s plenty of stones left to be thrown on sheet A.
Switzerland’s to-and-fro affair against United States earlier looks like a long time ago as Silvana Tirinzoni’s rink remain in control over Japan. The defending champions, searching for a four-peat in Sandviken, lead 8-2 against their opponents.
What they said...
Leading up this week, skip Rebecca Morrison spoke to The Press and Journal back home in Scotland about her rink’s objectives in Sweden.
She said: “We’re aiming for play-offs and we’ll take it from there if we make them. If we make the play-offs, we can talk about our next goal.
“I think a lot of the experiences we got at Europeans will stand us in good stead for the world championships – especially getting wins against some of the other good teams.
“That gives us confidence for the games we’re going to have. Playing in a medal game and having that kind of pressure is something I hadn’t experienced before, so to get that kind of experience back in November was really good.”
Believe it or not, but we’ve just had a second score of six on the opening day at LGT World Women’s Curling Championship 2023.
Following Sweden’s steal of half a dozen earlier, Switzerland have followed it up with six points of their own against Japan. Team Fujisawa Satsuki suffered a tough defeat in session one and will now need to come back from 6-2 down if they want to register a maiden win this week.
Elsewhere, Scotland and Italy have strong advantages in their clashes against Germany and Türkiye, respectively. Rebecca Morrison’s Scotland rink lead 5-0, while Italy are 6-0 up after three ends.
Canada and Sweden traded single-pointers in the opening two ends but some of the shots have been top class…
Just Kerri Einarson things. 🤩 The skip hits and rolls all the way across the rings to lie Canada 🇨🇦 shot behind cover on the wing.
Watch live on the Curling Channel at https://t.co/fy3vfdBx89#WWCC2023 #curling pic.twitter.com/ieC7N848bg
— World Curling (@worldcurling) March 18, 2023
🤘🇸🇪 Viking mascot
Sometimes, words are not necessary…
Italy have sprinted out of the blocks! Skipped by Olympic gold medallist Stefania Constantini, the Azzurri take an early 4-0 lead over Türkiye – despite not having last-stone advantage.
They finished tenth at the world championship last year and fourth at last year’s Le Gruyère AOP European Curling Championships. Can they challenge for medals in Sandviken this week?
As we mentioned earlier, we have a stellar group of commentators on the mic this week – and on that list is the legend himself Niklas Edin.
Big game early at #wwcc2023 as @EinarsonTeam 🇨🇦 vs @TeamHasselborg 🇸🇪. I get the pleasure to work with #olympic champ @NiklasEdin for the game. Tune in on @RecastTV pic.twitter.com/bS6lPCJX1z
— Luke Coley (@ColeysNotes) March 18, 2023
Five-time Brier champions, Team Gushue, have tweeted their support for Canada here in Sandviken…
The quest for the 2023 World Women’s Curling Championship starts today in Sandviken, Sweden! Best of luck Team Canada! We will be cheering loud & proud back home! Go 🇨🇦 Go! #WWCC2023 @CurlingCanada @TeamCanada @worldcurling https://t.co/nYnY7DrSkS
— Team Gushue (@TeamGushue) March 18, 2023
How do you follow an opening session like earlier? Well, we have another four crackers to serve up this evening…
The second session of the #WWCC2023 starts soon!
🇩🇪 Germany v Scotland 🏴
🇮🇹 Italy v Türkiye 🇹🇷
🇨🇭 Switzerland v Japan 🇯🇵
🇨🇦 Canada v Sweden 🇸🇪
Follow our live blog: https://t.co/LABn7azjfm
Watch all games live: https://t.co/fy3vfdBx89
📸 WCF / Jeffrey Au#Curling pic.twitter.com/6SA2bfaRxk
— World Curling (@worldcurling) March 18, 2023
Did you know LGT World Women’s Curling Championship 2023 has an official song? Well, you definitely do now! Alva Brodin’s ‘One Of A Kind’ can be listened to below…
Is it too late for Sweden to enter Brodin at Eurovision?
Results from session one
What a cracking opening session on ice. The bar has already been set very high for the rest of the week! Here’s the results…
Dupont: Great team spirit and willingness
If you know Madeleine Dupont, you know she gives a great post-match interview – and she didn’t disappoint again!
In response to taking the lead for the first time at the very end, Dupont jokingly responded: “We were just building up suspense – it was the plan all along.”
Asked for her thoughts on the team’s performance, she told us: “We never thought we would do it. We played extremely well in the first few ends, but the scoreboard didn’t reflect that.
“I think it shows being down, the whole game until the end, great team spirit and our willingness to keep going. I’m happy.”
Tirinzoni: We made mistakes but important to win
Like we promised, here’s Silvana Tirinzoni’s thoughts after her team beat United Stated 7-5 this afternoon.
“It was a typical first game of a championship,” admitted the Swiss skip. “We made mistakes we usually don’t make but we needed to adjust to the ice.
“The first win is very important. We expect United States to be in the mix so to beat them is great.
And for what will be fantastic news to the ears of Mark Callan, our chief ice man, Tirinzoni said: “The ice is wonderful. It’s some of the best we’ve ever had for a first game. It usually gets better throughout the week but today it was brilliant.”
Norway and Denmark victorious
And quickly after Switzerland’s triumph, Norway join them in the win column. Marianne Roervik’s rink defeat Korea 8-6 after grabbing three points in the final end.
Elsewhere, Denmark complete a stunning comeback to steal one in the tenth end and beat Japan 7-6. Madeleine Dupont’s team were 6-2 down after six ends, so to score five unopposed points is mightily impressive.
We’ll hope to chat to Dupont (the younger sister and skip) shortly.
Switzerland steal win
And that’s why they are world champions!
Switzerland take the opening-session victory over United States, stealing in the final end to extend the score to 7-5. A gutting result for Tabitha Peterson’s rink. We’ll hear from Silvana Tirinzoni shortly…
Martin loving it
A few stones remain in all three games. The legend, the myth and the man, Kevin Martin, is loving it on commentary.
“This game has had it all,” the Olympic champion says, as he commentates on Switzerland v United States.
😆📸 Smiles on day one
Into the business end
It would take a bold statement to call the winners in these three games. An opening-session win can do wonders for confidence and build momentum.
Having said that – how often do we see those late runners take gold medals? And that’s not just in curling.
What’s your favourite late charge to win a world title? Let us know using the hashtag #WWCC2023…
Not much between the two skips in the Denmark v Japan affair…
Madeleine Dupont, who is making her 14th world championship appearance, skipped her team to fifth in 2021 and sixth in 2022. More recently, they took gold medals at the Le Gruyère AOP European Curling Championships 2022.
Still plenty of action left
Sweden and New Zealand might be off the ice but we still have three encounters ongoing.
Switzerland, who have won seven out of the last ten world titles, are currently tied up at 5-5 against United States with the latter collecting three points in the seventh end. While, Norway and Korea are also level at 4-4 going into the remaining three ends.
Japan have a two-point advantage over Denmark as they lead 6-4 after seven ends. All to play for it seems…
Sweden score big win
Anna Hasselborg is delighted. Sweden defeat New Zealand 14-2 in six ends – a dream start to their campaign on home ice.
Speaking to fellow Swede (and Olympic champion) Niklas Edin afterwards, here’s the skip’s thoughts:
“It was so much fun from the start,” Hasselborg said.
“We got so much energy from the home crowd. We hope to have this support throughout the week – it’s awesome.”
On returning to face Canada tonight: “It is going to be tough. We are glad to get this win and go into tonight’s game and try to match it.”
Once the interview concluded, Hasselborg could be heard telling Edin how strange it is to be interviewed by her countryman (in English, too). They are clearly good friends.
A new level...
There’s multi-tasking – and then there’s multi-tasking…
Nevertheless, the dedication to curling is strong here! Where’s the most bizarre place you’ve tuned into curling? Suspect Heidi might be happy with what’s on show as Switzerland lead 5-2 against United States.
I’m lurking a bit, multitasking. Safari and Curling World Woman’s Championship. USA – Switzerland 🙂 Hello everyone :))
But great to see the tree Cheetah Boys with Ralph! #curlingSuiUSA #wildearth pic.twitter.com/Jz150vJbsn
— Heidi (@loveellisSwiss) March 18, 2023
A pre-game handshake like no other
Her team may have had the longest trek of all to get to the LGT World Women’s Curling Championship — all the way from New Zealand to Sweden — but skip Jess Smith has had the biggest journey of all.
This is a first-ever world championship appearance by New Zealand women. To get here, they had to qualify from the inaugural Pan Continental Championships, held in Calgary, Canada last November.
As we reported in November 2022, Jess was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Happily, she confirmed then that after medication and tests, she had had the all-clear and was able to resume her curling career.
During her health battle, Jess was given support from the curling community, including video messages from Team Hasselborg from Sweden. At the time she was blown away by the messages, especially, as she said, she had never even met the Swedish team.
Fast forward to this event and guess what….
In session one, Jess and her team lined up against the Olympic champions of Sweden who had gone out of their way to support her. Never has a pre-game handshake and greeting between opponents been more heart-felt.
A massive 33 points have been scored in the opening five ends. A jam-packed, thrilling first half in Sandviken.
Switzerland 4 – 2 United States
Korea 3 – 3 Norway
New Zealand 2 – 12 Sweden
Denmark 2 – 5 Japan
Not often, especially with the five-stone rule, are scores of six seen – but hosts Sweden have produced just that in the fourth end against New Zealand. They were stolen, too!
Lying a remarkable six prior to the last stone, Jessica Smith’s attempted quadruple take-out clipped her own corner guard and missed every Swedish stone. It puts Anna Hasselborg’s rink 12-1 up going into the fifth end.
Korea score three
Plenty of big-scoring ends in the opening session – and Korea have joined in.
Skip Ha Seung-youn last stone secures three for her team and they head into the fifth end leading 3-1 over Norway.
And we’ve got ourselves the first ‘shot watch’ of the championship courtesy of Denmark’s Mathilde Halse.
Unfortunately for Halse and co, Japan have started strongly on sheet D and lead 4-0 after three ends. Can Denmark respond before the interval?
Very well played by Mathilde Halse 🇩🇰 who runs the guard back at an angle, taking one yellow out and spinning her own red to lie second shot. 👏
Watch live on the Curling Channel at https://t.co/fy3vfdBx89#WWCC2023 #curling pic.twitter.com/AmGSm5dmtk
— World Curling (@worldcurling) March 18, 2023
Sweden off to flying start
Does a home crowd equal pressure? It certainly doesn’t look the case for Sweden as they get off to a dream start to score three in the opening end.
Remember, for all of Team Anna Hasselborg’s success (and there’s been plenty to write home about), the quartet are yet to stake claim to being world champions. Will that change this week on home ice?
On the mic
On the commentary bench we are blessed to have some of the best with Sander Roelvaag, Rhona Howie, Joanne Courtney, Kevin Martin, Luke Coley, Niklas Edin, Mike Harris, Kosuke Morozumi and Richard Harding all set to take the mic this week.
Courtney, a world champion herself in Beijing six years ago, is settling in well…
POV at the #WWCC2023 🤩 👋
🇳🇴 vs. 🇰🇷 on @RecastTV pic.twitter.com/SL41G7IDhA
— Joanne Courtney (@JoCourtney89) March 18, 2023
First stones thrown
The first stones of the LGT World Women’s Curling Championship 2023 have been thrown in our four opening-session games here in Sandviken.
Where are you tuning in from? Get involved using the hashtag #WWCC2023.
A championship atmosphere is palpable in Sandviken. As the teams prepare for their opening-day encounters, it was a bit more relaxed yesterday as the players accustomed themselves to the ice and had fun whilst our media team went to work.
If you didn’t know already, Canada lead Briane Harris is pregnant! And Team Kerri Einarson are delighted, as you can see below…
Ready to rumble
13 countries. 84 games. Nine days. Three medals. One world title. Are we ready for the LGT World Women’s Curling Championship 2023 to get underway?
For the first time in 19 years, we return to Sweden for a women’s world championship. On this occasion, we’re in Sandviken – just 25km west of Gaavle, where the 2004 event was held.
Here are the pairings of the first session
Switzerland v United States
Korea v Norway
New Zealand v Sweden
Denmark v Japan
Watch them live on The Curling Channel.
Welcome to Day One at the LGT World Women’s Curling Championship 2023 in Sandviken, Sweden!