PyeongChang Today: Muirhead books place in curling semis
PyeongChang 2018

PyeongChang Today: Muirhead books place in curling semis

21 February 2018 / 16:43

Team Muirhead will contest a medal match at PyeongChang 2018 after qualifying for the curling semi-finals, while Kyle Smith's rink will need to navigate a tie-breaker with Switzerland in order to keep their Olympic hopes alive.

  • Eve Muirhead beats world champions Canada to reach curling semi-finals
  • Team Smith defeated by USA and now face tie-breaker against Switzerland for last four slot
  • Mica McNeill and Mica Moore look to Beijing after eighth place finish in women’s bobsleigh
  • Snowboarder Billy Morgan qualifies for Saturday’s first-ever men’s snowboard big air final
  • Best ever team sprint result for cross-country skiing’s Andrew Musgrave and Andrew Young


Eve Muirhead secured her team a place in the semi-finals - and a guaranteed match for a medal - with a brilliant victory over Canadian world champion Rachel Homan.

Her British rink - including Vicki Adams, Lauren Gray and Anna Sloan - now face Sweden on Friday for a place in the gold medal match.

Team Muirhead

And they’ve been here before, losing the semi-final in Sochi to Canada four years ago, only to rebound just hours later to secure bronze.

Muirhead still labels that loss the toughest and most sobering of her career but this time the Canadians won’t be around to inflict it.

“The last few days we’ve been getting better and better and it’s all about building momentum for when it matters, these are the matches where we’ll be judged,” said Muirhead.

“Our aim was to book that semi-final slot and we’ve shown a lot of determination and patience and we’re in a good place.

“We loved playing under pressure, we thrive at this level and we’ve been here before. We’ll stay focused and clinical.”

Meanwhile, Kyle Smith insists there will be no panic after a loss to the United States. The British rink now face Switzerland for a place in Thursday evening's semi-finals.

He said: “I don't really see it as pressure. It's the chance to make the Olympic semi-finals and that's what we all play for, these chances.

“We'll definitely be ready and it's a great chance to showcase our sport and show how well we can play in those pressure situations.”


Mica McNeill cemented her reputation as one of bobsleigh’s fastest drivers after recording Britain’s best-ever finish with an eighth place alongside Mica Moore at the Olympic Sliding Centre.

Mica McNeill and Mica Moore

And they now believe they’ve done enough to push on towards Beijing. "We're buzzing about that result,” said McNeil.

“We deserved to come here, we knew we could absolutely kill it. We want to go to Beijing 2022 and absolutely smash it and be among the medals.

"We've got four years to work on things, get faster on the start and improve my driving skills. I definitely think we're capable of a medal in four years time."


Billy Morgan can’t wait to make history in this weekend’s snowboard big air final, after landing a back triple to secure his qualification.

He said: “It's going to be mental in the final. I would need a lot of luck to podium now after seeing what's going down. Watching practice it has been mental. But anything can happen, I will try my best."

Billy Morgan

Morgan was almost joined by teammate Rowan Coultas in the final but he missed out on the top six in heat one by just 0.50 points, finishing eighth in his heat. Jamie Nicholls also missed out but had the honour of being the first male snowboarder to compete in an Olympic men’s big air competition after dropping in first.

Cross Country Skiing

British pair Andrew Musgrave and Andrew Young sat provisionally in the team sprint final after their first heat but were forced to watch on as their place in the final slipped away.

The second heat produced a faster race than the first, with Musgrave and Young falling back from sixth in their heat to finish 12th overall.

The result is Britain’s second highest finish ever in an Olympic cross country event behind Musgrave’s seventh in the skiathlon at these Games, and the best team result ahead of three 14th place finishes in the men’s 4x10km relay (1956, 1964 and 1984).

“That was good fun, it was really hard,” said Young, who was celebrating his 26th birthday.

“I wasn't feeling lethargic but just didn't have my best body so I just had to make the most of it and try and ski three good consistent laps.

“I think we didn't quite ski to 100 per cent. At an Olympics if you don't come out all guns firing, you get punished for that.”

What to look out for tomorrow...

Dave Ryding and Laurie Taylor are in slalom action with their first run scheduled for 10.15 (01:15am UK time) and second run at 13.45 (04.45am). Ryding landed Britain’s first alpine World Cup skiing podium for 36 years in January last year and is competing at his third Games. 

Emily Sarsfield is in ski cross qualifying action at 10:00 (01:00am) with her seeding run while Kyle Smith’s rink take on Switzerland in a curling tie-breaker at 09.05 (00:05am UK time). Win that and they’ll play Sweden at 08.05 (11.05am).

Sportsbeat 2018