Suzhou views - what the stars had to say about the Curling World Cup opener
The launch of the new four-leg international series gave the athletes plenty to shout about
The first leg of the Curling World Cup was a voyage of discovery in many ways – a brand new venue, new season, many new line-ups, a new format with new rules and, of course, the launch of an exciting new addition to the curling calendar.
Here’s a look back at what the athletes had to say about the inaugural leg of the Curling World Cup in the sprawling metropolis of Suzhou.
Lisa Weagle, first for women’s champions Canada:
“It's really special to be able to play in the first Curling World Cup. Being here it feels a bit like playing in the World Championship or the Olympics, getting to wear our country's colours. We're really grateful for all the work that's gone into making this a world-class event."
Here Scotland men’s skip Bruce Mouat:
"The World Cup was a good experience for us so early on in the season. The event was run well with a great deal of very friendly and enthusiastic volunteers that showed us around their amazing city of Suzhou.
"The team and I got ourselves into a good position to qualify for the final after beating De Cruz and Koe but unfortunately missing the 4-foot for the second win against De Cruz didn't come off for us and we had to settle for a third-place finish overall. Getting some good wins against world-class opposition was definitely a confidence booster for us.”
Japan women’s vice-skip Chinami Yoshida was characteristically upbeat about her experience in Suzhou:
"This is the first competition for us this season, so we are so glad to be performing here and it’s exciting. I was really surprised when I saw this building, because it’s more like the Olympics! I’m so happy to come here for curling, I love it!"
United States’ mixed doubles pair Sarah Anderson and Korey Dropkin felt the rules changes offered just the right amount of challenge:
Sarah: "I think the new rules are a lot more fun and give the players more of a ‘voice’. I think it’s a new way of where the game is going and changing and it’s exciting to be a part of it."
Korey: "It’s a really fast-paced game and you have to be quick in making decisions. There’s a bigger consequence now if you run out of time so it makes things more challenging but it’s fun. The first leg of the inaugural Curling World Cup event, it’s certainly pretty motivating to do our best.”
Anna Hasselborg, skip of women’s finalists Sweden, was also full of praise:
“The Curling World Cup is an amazing tournament, everything looks so professional. It feels like being at a World Championship. It's really cool that the WCF have put this event together and it's great for the sport.”
Look back at more reports, pics and reaction from Suzhou in our news section.