The World Qualification Event 2020 got underway at the Kisakallio Sports Institute in Lohja, Finland on Monday (13 January), with the opening sessions of both the women’s and men’s round robin.
In the women’s first session of round-robin play, Italy, Korea, Norway and Turkey all opened their competition with a win.
Turkey defeated Australia, 13-5, despite Australia scoring three points in the first end for the early lead. Turkey took the lead for the first time with a score of three points in the fifth end, to go into the break ahead with a score of 6-5. Then in the second half of the game, Turkey stole seven points over three ends before Australia conceded with the final score, 13-5.
Italy defeated Estonia, 8-4, in the day’s first session. After Estonia blanked the first end, Italy took an early lead by stealing a single point in the second end, then followed that with a steal of two points in the third end. A further score of three points in the fifth end, gave Italy a 6-2 lead going into the break on the way to their win.
Korea defeated hosts Finland, 12-3, after eight ends. A Korean steal of three points in the fifth end increased their lead to 7-1 at the break. A score of two points by Korea in the seventh end, then another steal of three points in the eighth end was enough for Finland to concede.
In the session’s final game, Norway defeated Mexico, 9-3 in just seven ends. Norway opened the scoring with two points in the first end, then scored two more points in the third end. In the fifth end, Norway scored five points to put the game beyond Mexico.
Later in the evening the men’s competition began with wins for Czech Republic, hosts Finland, Poland and Russia.
Finland defeated China, 8-3, in the men’s first round-robin session after opening the scoring with three points in the first end. Finland scored two points in the third end, then went on to steal single points in each of the next three ends. China scored two points in the seventh end before conceding the game.
Poland opened their competition with a 12-2 win over Mexico. Poland went in to the fifth end break with an 8-1 lead, then sealed their victory with a score of four points in the seventh end.
Russia beat Japan, 8-4, in a game that had little scoring in the first half. Russia opened the scoring with a single point in the first end. Then Japan levelled the game with a single point in the second end. Russia blanked the next two ends, before scoring two points in the fifth end to lead 3-1.
Then in the second half of the game, Russia scored three points in the seventh end, then two further points in the ninth end before running Japan out of stones in the tenth end for the 8-4 win.
In the final game of the men’s opening session, Czech Republic defeated England, 5-3.
England blanked the opening two ends, before scoring a single point in the third end. Czech Republic responded with a score of two points in the fourth end, before England scored a single point in the fifth end to level the game at 2-2 going into the break.
Czech Republic opened the scoring in the second half with a single point in the sixth end. England then blanked the seventh end before scoring a single point in the eighth end to level the game once more.
In the ninth end, Czech Republic scored a decisive two points before running England out of stones in the tenth end to hold on for the 5-3 win.
The women’s competition continues on Tuesday (14 January) morning at 09:00, while the men return to the ice at 14:00. All times are Eastern European Time (EEST) which is UTC + 2.
Women’s session one results: Italy 8-4 Estonia; Korea 12-3 Finland; Turkey 13-5 Australia; Mexico 3-9 Norway.
Men’s session one results: China 3-8 Finland; Mexico 2-12 Poland; Japan 4-8 Russia; England 3-5 Czech Republic.
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