Canada's Kevin Koe locks up world curling playoff berth
Canada skip Kevin Koe delivers a rock during his match against Scotland at the World Men's Curling Championships in Beijing, April 3, 2014. (REUTERS/China Daily)
Thanks to a pair of big wins and a lot of luck, Canada is headed to the Page playoff 1-2 game at the 2014 World Men’s Curling Championship in Beijing, China.
After Kevin Koe and his Calgary rink wiped out Germany’s John Jahr 11-5 in seven ends Thursday morning, Canada shot down Scotland’s Ewan MacDonald 7-5 in the afternoon to finish the round robin with an 8-3 record.
Those two wins, combined with a pair of losses by Japan Thursday, gave Canada an unlikely berth to Friday’s 1-2 game against Norway’s Thomas Ulsrud. Koe finished second to Ulsrud in the round-robin standings.
“We woke up today just worried about making sure that we made the playoffs,” Koe said. “We lose that game (to Scotland) and we could be in a tiebreaker or something. The big thing was just to win and get in the playoffs, and if we were in the 3-4 game, that was fine with us — we’ve done it before. But to get in the 1-2 game, with an extra life? That’s a bonus, for sure.”
Norway finished atop the rankings at 10-1. Switzerland finished third while Sweden and Japan will play a tiebreaker Friday to determine who gets the fourth spot.
Koe said he’s looking forward to Friday’s game.
“I like where we are, considering how hard we’ve had to battle,” he said. “We haven’t always been at our best. If we can find our ‘A’ game in the playoffs, I like our chances.”