Italy record first win at 2018 Le Gruyère AOP Europeans

  • Italy get their first win of the week © WCF / Richard Gray

Italy recorded their first win so far when they beat Czech Republic by 7-6 in Tuesday afternoon’s sixth session of women’s round-robin play. By contrast, Switzerland remained undefeated, beating Denmark by 10-6 to stay in a clear lead at the top of the table.

Against Czech Republic, Italy had carved out a 5-3 half-time lead and in the tenth end, Italy skip Veronica Zappone hit out a Czech stone to score one point needed for her 7-6 victory. This win keeps them in touch for a world qualification place - either directly, or by way of the new World Qualification Event that will complete the line-up.

After her win, a beaming Italy skip Veronica Zappone said, “We’ve won our first game! We’ve had a couple of very tight games so this feels great! I hope we can stay on this good track in our next games. We will get motivation out of this game and out of this performance – we are looking forward now.”

Meanwhile Switzerland cruised to a 10-6 win over Denmark for their sixth win. They opened strongly in the first end when their fourth player Alina Paetz [pictured below © WCF / Stephen Fisher] played a delicate tap-back to score three points, later she sealed their win with a score of five points in the seventh end.

Behind them, Germany lie in a clear second place, thanks to their fifth win in this session, by 10-5 over Latvia. In the third end of this game Germany skip Daniela Jentsch played an open draw in to the house to score two points and level the score at 2-2.

In the sixth end, another draw for two points by Jentsch levelled the score again, this time at 4-4. A strong second half saw the Germans steal four in the seventh end on the way to their win.

Afterwards, Jentsch said, “we went into this game more nervous than for the other games because we knew this was another must-win for us. Now we’ve got all the must-wins done and the strong opponents are coming. We’ve done everything we could do now and everything else is a bonus.”

Olympic champions Sweden have battled sickness in their team, but still managed to beat Russia by 8-7 after an extra end. Reflecting on her team’s predicament, skip Anna Hasselborg said, “It’s been hard and I’m so proud of how we battled through. Our alternate Johanna has done an amazing job. It feels like this is the first game of a new tournament and we now have the line-up that we should have. We are all feeling very healthy now.”

Despite their problems, Sweden sit in a clear third place on the table.

Defending champions Scotland bounced back from defeat with a 10-5 win over Finland. In the eighth end, their skip Eve Muirhead played a double-take out for a count of three points and a 10-5 win. Later she said, “that was a good game and we all played well, but we’ve got to treat every game like a final now.”

Session six results: Latvia 5-10 Germany; Switzerland 10-6 Denmark; Czech Republic 6-7 Italy; Sweden 8-7 Russia; Finland 5-10 Scotland

Standings after session six:

Switzerland 6-0
Germany 5-1
Sweden 4-2
Russia 3-3
Scotland 3-3
Czech Republic 2-4
Denmark 2-4
Finland 2-4
Latvia 2-4
Italy 1-5

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