China, Korea and Japan men qualify for Pacific-Asia play-offs
The first three men’s teams of the Pacific-Asia Curling Championships 2019 have qualified for play-offs in Shenzhen, China. Hosts, China, Korea and Japan all advance to Friday’s (8 November) semi-finals after victories on Wednesday morning’s (6 November) round-robin session.
New Zealand and Australia both picked up wins in this session, against Nigeria and Qatar respectfully. New Zealand are currently in fourth place with four wins and three losses while both Australia and Chinese Taipei have three wins and four losses.
Chinese Taipei had the winning stone in their hand against Japan, tied with the last stone advantage, but ticked off a guard on a take-out to win. Japan stole a single point and won the game, 6-5.
The final hurrah
So far, hosts, China, have had smooth sailing through seven sessions of round-robin play. The Chinese led Kazakhstan 7-0 after three ends and went on to win 13-1 to mark their seventh success.
On Tuesday (5 November) night, the hosts will be tested against defending champions, Japan, in a rematch of last years’ final. Their final round-robin game will see China meeting undefeated Korea, to determine the ranking of the semi-finals.
China’s skip, Qiang Zou, feels their new team is gelling well in Shenzhen. “We feel we’re getting on better with the new lineup after these games, and in the remaining ones we will continue to follow our plans and improve our communication, and I think we can get some good results by doing so.”
After a two-loss day on Tuesday against China and Chinese Taipei, Australia bounced back with a win against Qatar.
The Aussies started strong with three points in the first end, followed by two in the third end to go up 5-1 early. The team had a new line-up for the first time this week, with fifth player Matthew Millikin stepping in for his first international game.
Sean Hall, Australia’s skip commented on his addition to the team, “He played very well, so we’re very proud of him and happy to give him a chance on the international arena.
Tonight, Australia faced Korea, and hope to build upon their win this morning. “We figured we had some opportunities and luckily we were able to get a couple of big ends. We executed a lot better than yesterday so it’s nice to get the win on the board and get ready for a very tough one against Korea tonight.”
Results session seven: Chinese Taipei 5-6; Kazakhstan 1-13 China; Hong Kong 3-15 Korea; Nigeria 3-18 New Zealand; Australia 10-3 Qatar
Standings after session seven
Q China 7-0
Q Korea 7-0
Q Japan 6-1
New Zealand 4-3
Chinese Taipei 3-4
Hong Kong 1-6