Sweden beat Finland in 3v4 Play-off to qualify for Semi-final

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Sweden v Finland 3v4 Page Play-off highlights from World Curling TV

Sweden beat Finland by 7-4 in Saturday afternoon's Page 3v4 Play-off at the Ford World Men's Curling Championship 2015 being staged in the Scotiabank Centre in Halifax, Canada to qualify for the Semi-final where they will face hosts Canada.

Sweden skip Niklas Edin will now lead his team into the Semi-final against Canada Photo: WCF/CC/Michael Burns

Finland meanwhile will return to the ice on Sunday morning to play the loser of that Semi-final for bronze medals.

In this game, Sweden opened the scoring with one point in the first end.

Two blank ends followed and then Finland's skip Aku Kauste did score in the fourth end, playing a nose-hit for one point to level the game at 1-1.

In the fifth end, Sweden's skip Niklas Edin was facing three Finnish counting stones when he came to play his last draw. He got inside them all to score one point and take a 2-1 lead.

The Swedes then had a break-through in the sixth end, stealing two points for a 4-1 lead when Kauste got the angles wrong with an attempted promote shot.

The Finns responded to this set-back in the next end when an umpire's measure gave them the second of two points that reduced Sweden's lead to 4-3.

In the eighth end, Edin's second stone just got round a front guard by a whisker to hit out a Finnish stone and stay in the house to score another two points for a 6-3 lead.

Kauste was forced to draw his final stone on to the button to score one point in the ninth end and then, in the tenth end, a hit and stay by Edin gave Sweden one more point to seal a 7-4 victory.

After their win, Sweden's skip Edin said: "It feels really good to be through to the semi-final. We played a really solid game. Finland stuck to their game, they played really well throughout and he (Finland skip Aku Kauste) made all of his last shots to keep scoring points. It was an interesting game to play in but we're really looking forward to the next game now."

He added: "The turning point was definitely when we stole two points. I thought we had some chances before that but he made some really nice shots and we could only get our one (point) every time. It could easily have gone either way but I think we were the stronger team and when we got that two they needed to do something extraordinary to win it."

Meanwhile, Finland’s Kauste said: "You need to play really well if you want to beat those guys. I think we made some good choices, got some really good set-ups but they were just that tiny bit better today. At the end he had a pretty easy shot for the win but at least he had to throw it."

Looking forward he said: "We have one more game and we surely want to win a medal. It would mean a lot for us. I don’t know about the other play-off teams, they are all world champions, so they probably don’t care about any other medals than the gold, but bronze would be really big for us."

With defending champions Norway already qualified for the gold medal game, the next game sees Sweden play Canada in the sole Semi-final on Saturday evening, with the winner going on to face Norway for the title on Sunday afternoon, and, before that, the losers facing Finland for bronze medals.

SCHEDULE (all times local, Atlantic Daylight Time)
Saturday 4 April, 2015
Semi-final:
Canada v winner of 3v4 Page Play-off (19:30)

Sunday 5 April, 2015
Bronze medal game:
Finland v loser of Semi-final (10:00)
Gold medal game: Norway v winner of Semi-final (16:00)

RESULTS
3v4 Page Play-off:
Sweden 7, Finland 4.

STANDINGS
Standings after 3v4 Page Play-off (W-L):

1. Norway 11-1 (To play winner of Semi-final in gold medal game)
2. Canada 10-2 (To play Sweden in Semi-final)
3. Sweden 9-3 (To play Canada in Semi-final)
4. Finland 7-6 (To play loser of Semi-final in bronze medal game)
5. USA 6-6
6. Japan 5-6
7. Switzerland 5-6
8. China 4-7
9. Czech Republic 4-7
10. Italy 3-8
11. Scotland 3-8
12. Russia 2-9

Rankings are determined by rule C9 of the World Curling Federation's ‘The Rules of Curling and Rules of Competition’. Details can be obtained at www.worldcurling.org/rules-and-regulations

Video Highlights: Highlights from games throughout the Championship will be available to watch courtesy of World Curling TV (WCTV), the television arm of the World Curling Federation.

WCTV will provide extensive live and video-on-demand coverage to broadcasters around the world from Halifax. The full broadcast schedule is here: http://www.worldcurling.org/wmcc2015/schedule

In addition, curling fans around the world will be able to follow selected live coverage of the 2015 World Championship events via the World Curling Federation’s YouTube Channel www.youtube.com/WorldCurlingTV

The 2016 Ford World Men's Curling Championship will be staged in Basel, Switzerland starting on Saturday 2nd April.