Olympic bronze medallist Eve Muirhead put the manner of her return to winning ways at the European Curling Championships in Switzerland down to a perception that she’s drinking in the last chance saloon.
After three straight wins following an opening defeat to Denmark, Muirhead and her Scottish rink of fellow Olympic bronze medallists Anna Sloan and Vicki Adams as well as Sarah Reid fell to back to back defeats.
First it was Russian Anna Sidorova, who is now seven from seven after a 12-3 defeat of Finland, and then it was Estonia after an extra end but Muirhead ensured a return to winning ways came against Germany.
And it was comprehensive too with two points scored in each of the first two ends and then three in the third after German skip Andrea Schoepp over-compensated and put her last stone through the house.
Trailing 7-0 Schoepp got a single point in the fourth but Muirhead responded with two in the fifth for a 9-1 lead that would become 10-2 by the end of the seventh and at which point the German rink conceded.
Muirhead’s rink are on a record of four and three in the round-robin standings with matches against Sweden, who are one of three teams on five and two, and Finland, level with Scotland, left to play in Champery.
Only four teams progress through to the next round and tiebreakers could be needed to separate the six in contention and Muirhead knows only too well what her and her rink need to do in the current situation.
“Estonia wasn’t our best second half of the game but we knew we had to win so we came out sharp. We sharpened up on a lot of things that we didn’t do and we did that well,” she said.
“It is tough to keep your concentration [when you’re well up] but you’ve got to give the opposition respect. They came back and put us under a lot of pressure in the last few ends.
“You’ve got to keep making the shots – one missed shot and they’d pounce on it and a two or three can come from nowhere.”
Meanwhile in the men’s draw Swedish skip Niklas Edin claimed a seventh victory from seven after defeating Norway 7-6 while Scotland’s David Edwards fell to Russia 6-5 having battled back from 5-1 down to level.
It’s tight in the men’s draw, aside from Edin, with three teams on four and three and three on three and four behind Italy and Edwards said: “That was very tough and we were hugely unlucky in the sixth end.
“After that we were four down but we stuck in there and made him play his last shot and all square coming home, given the situation we were in, was reasonable. We just need to worry about the next two games and just keep winning.”
© Sportsbeat 2014