Norway win CPT World Men's Curling Championship 2014
April 6, 2014
Norway beat Sweden 8-3 on Sunday afternoon to claim gold medals and the world title at the CPT World Men's Curling Championship 2014, presented by Ford of Canada, in Beijing's Capital Gymnasium, China.
Norway opened with a draw shot by skip Thomas Ulsrud to score one point in the first end.
They then stole a single point in the second end when Ulsrud hit and rolled his last effort onto the button and when Sweden skip Oskar Eriksson's nudge-shot that followed could not move Ulsrud's stone enough, Norway gained a 2-0 lead.
The game turned in the third end when Norway's Ulsrud played a double take-out with his last stone, leaving Sweden the chance to score with their own last stone.
Eriksson was light with his last draw and his stone wrecked on a Norwegian stone on the way in, allowing Norway to steal two points and take what proved to be a decisive 4-0 lead.
With the score already at 5-0 in Norway's favour, thanks to a further single steal in the fourth end, Sweden finally got on the score-board in the fifth end when Eriksson drew his last stone into the house to score one point and reduce the Norwegian lead to 5-1.
In the sixth end, Ulsrud built on his lead again with a draw shot that scored one point, giving Norway a 6-1 lead on the score board.
Sweden brought Norway's lead back to 6-3 in the seventh end when Eriksson hit out a Norwegian stone to give Sweden a further two points.
But in the eighth end, Norway's Ulsrud played a nose-hit with his last stone to score two points, win the game by 8-3, and claim the world title.
After the game, Ulsrud said: "We've been training so hard for this for so many years, for so many Worlds. I've been close a couple of times but to be called world champion, that sounds amazing."
Ulsrud had a clear opinion of what made the difference on the day: "We've been in a lot of championship finals and we've been here before, so experience made the difference I think."
Speaking about his opponents, he said: “They've been playing really well all week and I think he struggled with draw-weight. They handed us the game in an easy way at the beginning. If Norway is leading 5-0, you're in trouble."
He made a particular mention of his third player Torger Nergard, saying: "This may be the last game for Torger, so it's special." Asked about his own future, Ulsrud added: “I don't know. You have to ask my wife. We have to have a sit down when we come home, but right now I don't care, I'm world champion and that feels good."
Swedish skip Oskar Eriksson said: “We played pretty bad there, but we're happy with the week. We were really happy to be in the final and it's too bad we couldn't give them a better match."
Asked how important winning silver is, he said: “It's really good for us, it's the first time we've played in a senior event as a team. In a few weeks we'll be really happy, I think.”
This is the tenth appearance at this level for Thomas Ulsrud. His 2014 World Championship winning team included third Torger Nergaard, second player Christoffer Svae, lead Haavard Vad Petersson and they were supported by alternate Markus Hoeiberg and coach Pal Trulsen.
This is the first world title for Norway since 1988 when skip Eigil Ramsfjell skipped the team that won in Lausanne, Switzerland.
By a happy coincidence, Ramsfjell was in the arena to witness this Norwegian triumph as, during the Championship closing ceremony, he was inducted into the World Curling Hall of Fame.
Also during the closing ceremony, Scotland skip Ewan MacDonald was named as the recipient of the Collie Campbell Memorial Award, voted on by all the players in the Championship, and presented to the individual they feel best displays a spirit of sportsmanship and the values of curling.
The Ford World Men’s Curling Championship 2015 takes place in Halifax, Canada between March 28 and April 5.
Gold Medal Game: Sweden 3, Norway 8.
After Gold Medal Game:
1. Norway (Gold)
2. Sweden (Silver)
3. Switzerland (Bronze)
7. Czech Republic
In addition, Curling fans around the world will be able to see selected highlights from the 2014 World Championship events via the World Curling Federation’s YouTube Channel www.youtube.com/WorldCurlingTV
Event Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WorldMensCurlingChampionship
Twitter: @worldcurling and @WCFmedia
Hashtags: #WMCC2014 and #curling