So Sunday morning dawned bright and cold in the capital; not quite frosty but thinking about it. Three Scottish teams were left in the competition, teams Hardie, Mouat and Bryce and five overseas teams, the undefeated Rasmus Stjerne (Denmark), perennial Edinburgh visitor, David Šik (Czech Republic), Yannick Schwaller (Switzerland), Alexander Baumann (Germany) and perhaps the surprise package of the tournament so far, Section C’s winner, Karel Kubeška.The Kubeška v Baumann game was tight, tight, tight with the scores tied at 3-3 after five ends. Come the last two stones of the eighth end, with Kubeška leading 5-3, Alex Baumann was sitting two stones at a slight angle behind a short guard. Karel Kubeška called for the out-turn freeze with Jiří Candra’s last stone; played to perfection! Good for the Baumann team though; they saw an outwick opportunity on a long corner guard to take that stone out and win the game with a last end score of three. Sadly for them, their played stone just over-curled leaving team Kubeška with another steal for a 6-3 win. In the David Šik v Bruce Mouat game, the score was tied 3-3 going into the last end, the Šik team having blanked end seven. With an open house to draw to, David put his draw through the back, leaving Bruce, Bobby Lammie, Alasdair Schreiber and Derrick Sloan to count their blessings and proceed to the semi-finals. Rasmus Stjerne continues as the only undefeated team in the competition with a good win over Cammy Bryce. The Stjerne foursome were 5-4 up with the hammer playing the eighth end and managed to score one for a 6-4 win. Finally, Grant Hardie, Duncan Menzies, Blair Fraser and David Reid had a good win against Yannick Schwaller. A two at end seven took them into a 4-2 advantage and a stolen two in the last put the icing on the cake and made the game look a lot less close than it actually was.
So here are the semi-final match-ups –
Rasmus Stjerne plays Karel Kubeška on sheet four
Bruce Mouat plays Grant Hardie in an all-Scottish semi-final on sheet two. Bruce’s team is rotating, so Gregor Cannon comes back into the team and Derrick Sloan drops out.