Canada advances to semifinals at world mixed doubles curling championship

Canada’s Jennifer Jones and Brent Laing qualified for the semifinal after wrapping up first place in their pool at the world mixed doubles curling championship on Thursday.

The duo beat host South Korea 7-6 to finish with an 8-1 round-robin record, and received some good fortune when the Netherlands upset Estonia 8-6.

Both Canada and Estonia entered the final day of the round robin with identical 7-1 records.

Estonia, who handed Canada its only loss, owned the tie-breaker between the two teams if they finished tied atop Pool A.

“That kind of came out of nowhere,” Jones said of Estonia’s loss. “We just wanted to finish the round robin off strong, and obviously with a win, and we were quite content with second place. First place is just an added bonus.”

As a result of finishing first, Canada advances directly to Friday’s semifinal against the winner of the qualifying game between Scotland’s Jen Dodds and Bruce Mouat (7-2), who finished third in Canada’s pool, and Cory Thiesse and Korey Dropkin of the United States (7-2), who finished second in Pool B.

Japan’s Chiaki Matsumura and Yasumasa Tanida (8-1) won the other pool to advance to the semifinal, and will play the winner of the early game between Estonia’s Marie Kaldvee and Harri Lill (7-2) and Martine Roenning and Mathias Braenden of Norway (7-2).

“Playoff time is always fun; well, the whole week has been fun. I mean, you look around and you see all the other countries’ names, that’s always a good sign. World championships are hard to get to. So it’s been great,” said Laing. “Two more wins would make it extra special. We’ll do everything we can to do that, but we’ll see where it goes.”

The gold-medal game will be played on Saturday.