China's lead Jingtao Xu - © WCF / Tom Rowland

China men collect Pacific-Asia 2019 bronze medals

The hosts of the Pacific-Asia Curling Championships 2019, China men, have won bronze medals at the Shenzhen Universiade Sports Center on Saturday morning.

In Shenzhen, China, skip Qiang Zou and his team of third Zhiyu Wang, second Jiafeng Tian, lead Jingtao Xu and alternate Peng Han, beat New Zealand in the bronze medal game.

The final score was 9-4 to China.

The men’s gold medal game, between Korea and Japan, will now be played on Saturday (9 November) afternoon at 15:00. The winner of the men’s final, Korea or Japan, guarantee their place at the LGT World Men’s Curling Championship 2020 to be held in Glasgow, Scotland between 28 March and 5 April.

The runner-up and now China, will have a second chance for world qualification, with an offer to compete in the World Qualification Event 2020. That competition will be held in Lohja, Finland, from 13 to 18 January.

Strong start

The bronze medal game teams shake hands – © WCF / Tom Rowland

China had a strong start to their bronze medal game, when in the first end, after New Zealand missed a run-back attempt, skip Zou was able to draw for a four point lead, 4-0.

China added another point to their tally in the second end, before New Zealand opened their scoring account in the fifth end. In that end, skip, Scott Becker, executed a hit-and-roll to score a point. At this stage it was 5-1.

China stole two points in the fifth end, when Becker was attempting a draw for two points, but collided with a guard on the way into the house with his last stone. Then, another last stone draw, in the sixth end, saw China’s Zou add another point for an 8-1 lead.

China stole again in the sixth end, 9-1. Then in the seventh end Becker came up short with another last stone draw and could only secure a point from the end, 9-2.

In the last end, New Zealand were applying pressure on China and lay with three counting stones when Zou threw his last stone. He was attempting a double take-out, but was only able to clear one of the three stones. New Zealand stole two points from the end taking the score to 9-4, in China’s favour. But, at this stage New Zealand chose to concede the game and shook hands.

Looking ahead

China’s skip, Zou, said afterwards, “There were some differences on the ice today, the pebble was a little bit bigger. This meant there was a bigger curl. We found differences and we had to communicate. We also, caught the mistakes of the New Zealand team [which helped us to win].

Looking ahead to the future he continued, “We’re a newly formed team and we need to build team cooperation. Even after we win a medal we need to go further and work hard [to be better]. We need deeper communication and we need to look at the detail of how we play.

“We have two years left until the Olympic Games and this will be filled with preparation. We will work hard.”

 

Men’s bronze result: China 9-4 New Zealand

 

Standings after the bronze medal game

Korea 10-0 (Gold final)

Japan 8-1 (Gold final)

China 8-2 (Bronze winner)

New Zealand 6-5

Chinese Taipei 4-4

Australia 3-5

Qatar 3-5

Kazakhstan 2-6

Hong Kong 1-7

Nigeria 0-8

 

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Shenzhen, China

9 November 2019