Historic first medal for Finnish women; Norway men win Bronze

  • Finland women win historic first medal Photo: WCF / Laura Godenzi

There was a historic first-ever medal for Finland's women curlers as they beat Denmark by 10-8 in Friday (27 November) evening's Bronze Medal Game at the Le Gruyère European Curling Championships 2015 in Esbjerg, Denmark. In the men's Bronze Medal Game, Norway beat Finland by 7-4.

In the fourth end of the women's game, Denmark's skip Lene Nielsen hit-out a Finnish stone to score two points and take a 3-2 lead. But, in the next end, Finland's skip Oona Kauste also played a hit, to score four points and move her own team into the lead, at 6-3.

In the seventh end, with six counting Danish stones already sitting in the house, Finland's Kauste played a delicate tap-back to rescue the situation, scoring one point and moving her lead to 7-5.

In the eighth end, Denmark's Nielsen missed a take-out attempt and this gave Finland a steal of two more points, stretching their lead to 9-5. However, the Danes fought back in the ninth, scoring three points to reduce the Finns' lead to just one point, at 9-8.

In a tense tenth end, Finland's Kauste was facing two Danish stones sitting just off the button and she managed to draw her own last stone inside them, to score one more point, win the game by 10-8 and take a historic medal for Finland.

In the fourth end of the men's Bronze game, Norway's skip Thomas Ulsrud hit-out a Finnish stone to score two points and take a 5-1 lead. In the seventh end, Finland's skip Aku Kauste also played a hit, scoring one point to reduce Norway's lead to 6-3.

The teams then swapped single point scores in the eighth and ninth ends and then Norway ran Finland out of stones in the tenth, to win 7-4 and claim Bronze Medals.

Norway win an eighth European Curling Championships Bronze Medal Photo WCF / Laura Godenzi
They Said It:

Oona Kauste; skip, Finland (after 10-8 win over Denmark):

"I just don't have words. I'm just so happy that we made it. This is the first time a Finnish women's team has won a medal here at the Europeans so I'm sure this means a lot."

Thomas Ulsrud; skip, Norway (after 7-4 win over Finland):

"That was a good bounce back. We had to get this morning's game out of our system because we've been playing brilliant all week. This morning against Sweden the ice was a bit different and we didn't get the feel of it for the first five.

“We had a perfect record and, I think, even before the last two games we hadn't even played ten ends, so we were pretty much in control until the end here. We had one bad game and that's it. You've got to win the right games, I guess."


WORLD CHALLENGE Highlights

The first of the best-of-three World Challenge Games also took place during this session. In these games Denmark's men, winners of the B-Division, beat Italy, the eighth-placed A-Division team, by 7-2, while the Italian women [B-Division winners] beat Norway [eighth in the A-Division], by 7-4. The eventual winners of these challenges will take the last available European slot in both the men's and women's World Curling Championships 2016, later this season.

The second set of World Challenge Games takes place tomorrow (Saturday 28 November) at 09.00 (CET).


WCTV Highlights: next live broadcast, on http://www.youtube.com/worldcurlingtv, tomorrow at 10.00 (CET), Sweden v Switzerland (Men's Gold Medal Game)
BRONZE MEDAL results

Women's Bronze Medal Game: Finland 10-8 Denmark
Men's Bronze Medal Game: Norway 7-4 Finland

WORLD CHALLENGE results

Women's World Challenge Game #1: Norway 4-7 Italy
Men's World Challenge Game #1: Italy 2-7 Denmark

The World Challenge Games are played between the men's and women's teams that finished eighth in the A-Division and the teams that won the B-Division, at the Le Gruyère European Curling Championships 2015. The teams play a best of three to determine the final men's and women's teams, from the WCF European Zone, to qualify for the World Curling Championships 2016.