Skaslien: I'll teach Ulsrud a thing or two!
Omaha champion to join mixed doubles rookie Thomas Ulsrud in Jonkoping and says May’s Grand Final will be “highlight of the season”
Omaha champion Kristin Skaslien will team up the legendary Thomas Ulsrud in Jonkoping next week and hopes to teach the mixed doubles novice a few lessons about the format.
The 33-year-old Norwegian was victorious in leg two’s mixed doubles event alongside regular partner Magnus Nedregotten, having paired up with Sander Roelvaag in leg one in Suzhou.
Despite already sealing her place in May’s Curling World Cup Grand Final in Beijing, Skaslien is determined to do well in Sweden alongside her compatriot, who’s one of the most successful curlers in history.
"I'm looking forward to Jonkoping,” said the 2018 Olympic bronze medallist. “It’s not far away from home and I've heard the arena and surroundings are great.
“Even though I'm already qualified for Beijing, I will do my very best playing alongside Thomas in Jonkoping. The competition is tough, and this is the first time we play together, but I’m sure we’ll have a lot of fun.
“Thomas is very easy to get along with and I’m sure I have a lot to learn from him. Perhaps I can teach Thomas a thing or two about mixed doubles!”
Ulsrud, 47, is a five-time World Curling Championship medallist and holds the record for the most major championship wins, but Skaslien expects some time will be required to get acquainted with each other on the ice.
“It’s always challenging to start playing with a new partner, to learn to know each other,” added Skaslien.
“At the same time it’s refreshing to try something new, and a great opportunity to learn from each other’s experience. Hopefully we’re able to quickly find out what works for us.”
Reflecting on her final triumph in Omaha against Swiss pair Jenny Perret and Martin Rios, where they went 4-0 down in the first end, Skaslien says staying calm proved crucial.
“Looking back at Omaha, I'm really proud of what we achieved. The final started off in the worst possible way with four points against us in the first end, but somehow we managed to work our way back into it.
“We stayed calm, worked together to make the most out of every shot and I really enjoyed being out there on the ice. Playing in the Grand Final in Beijing will be the highlight of this season.”