Canada, Russia qualify for wheelchair curling semi-finals

There is just one more day of round-robin wheelchair curling action at Sochi 2014 before the final four teams are decided. 12 Mar 2014
Mark Ideson

Canada's Mark Ideson competes in the round-robin session against Korea on Day 5 of Sochi 2014.

ⒸGetty Images
By World Curling

The final day of round-robin play begins at 9:30 (MSK) on Thursday (13 March) followed by another session at 15:30 (MSK).

Canada and Russia became the first two teams to qualify for the semi-finals of the wheelchair curling competition at the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games.

Russia created history by defeating Great Britain to qualify for the semi-finals for the first time. This comes shortly after making their Paralympic Winter Games debut earlier this week.

For Canada, their win against South Korea means that they still have the opportunity to defend their Paralympic golds from Vancouver 2010 and Torino 2006.

Russia started well against Great Britain and after blanking the first end found themselves 4-1 up by the fourth end break.

They remained in control throughout this game and took a crucial step towards their victory in the fifth end when their skip, Andrey Smirnov, made a take-out to score two points and gain a 6-1 lead.

The hosts then went on to wrap up the game with a score of five points in the seventh end, which forced Great Britain to concede the game with the final score 11-2.

This took Russia’s record to six wins and one loss which mathematically qualified them for the semi-finals.

Afterwards, Russia skip Andrey Smirnov said: “All of the games are critical today and they all decide who gets into the play-offs. So it was very serious. We are very lucky and very grateful that it turned out that way."

Canada joined them in the semi-final line-up as they defeated South Korea, also in seven ends, 10-4.

Knowing they have now qualified along with Russia, Canada skip Jim Armstrong said: “We are tied with them in winning the same amount of games, but we've played Russia before and beaten them - so let's see what happens.”

The USA, meanwhile, picked up a second consecutive win, this time against China to keep their semi-final qualification hopes alive.

The USA raced into a 4-0 lead by the fourth end break and although China took two points in the fifth end that was the only end they would score in.

The USA rounded out the game with a score of two points in the sixth end and stole four points in the seventh end at which point China conceded with the final score 10-2.

The fourth and final game of the morning session was between Norway and Slovakia with both teams still focused on reaching the semi-finals. Slovakia won 11-4 to move to a 4-3 record in the tournament.

In the afternoon, Russia kept up their fine form in front of a packed home support as they picked up a last end, last stone victory over Norway, winning 6-5.

The USA picked up their second win of the day, as they defeated Vancouver 2010 bronze medallists Sweden, 8-3.

The only other game in the afternoon session was between China and Finland, with China taking the 8-2 victory.

The four top ranked teams after the round-robin, and tie-breakers if required, will qualify for the semi-finals.

The team ranked first will play the team ranked fourth, while the team ranked second will play third. Both semi-final winners will go into the gold medal game while the losers will play for the bronze medals.

Both the semi-finals and the medal games will be played on Saturday (15 March).

The final day of round-robin play begins at 9:30 (MSK) on Thursday (13 March) followed by another session at 15:30 (MSK).


1. Russia 7-1 (Qualified for semi-finals)

2. Canada 6-1 (Qualified for semi-finals)

3. Great Britain 4-3

3. Slovakia 4-3

5. China 4-4

5. USA 4-4

7. Norway 3-5

8. Korea 2-5

8. Sweden 2-5

10. Finland 1-6