Canada opens women's curling worlds with wins over China, Germany

With Canada's Ambassador to China looking on, Team Canada put on a show to open the 2017 CPT World Women's Curling Championship in Beijing.

Rachel Homan's Ottawa rink next plays Russia

Rachel Homan, center, of Canada throws a curling stone in a match against China during the CPT World Women's Curling Championship 2017 (WWCC) in Beijing, China Saturday on Saturday. (The Associated Press)

Ottawa's Rachel Homan and her Canada rink improved to 2-0 at the world women's curling championship on Saturday with a 6-2 win over Germany following a 9-3 victory over host China in the tournament's first draw.

"The first day of any major championship is a little bit exhausting," said second Joanne Courtney. "There are opening ceremonies, which are great to soak in the environment, but it makes for a longer day. You're trying to learn the ice, the rocks, get your sea legs under you, and that's always tiring. And then add it on that our body clocks probably aren't quite on par with the time here in Beijing [12 hours ahead of the team's home]."

Against Germany's Daniella Jentsch, Canada set the tone early with a first-end deuce and never looked back. Single points for Canada in the sixth, seventh and eighth ends resulted in an early concession by the Germans.

"Absolutely, it's satisfying," said Courtney. "We had such a great run at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts and did a lot of things very well there, and we just wanted to make sure that we continued on all that here. We're really happy with the day."

"We're really happy to get the two wins today," added lead Lisa Weagle. "Those were two really good teams, and this is definitely the latest we've stayed up since we've been here, so we're all a little bit tired and ready for a good sleep tonight."

In the other evening draw games, Nina Roth of the U.S. (1-1) bounced back from a disappointing loss earlier to Scotland's Eve Muirhead with a 10-8 victory over Sweden's Anna Hasselborg (1-1); Anna Kubeskova of the Czech Republic won her opener, 6-5 over Denmark's Lene Nielsen (0-1); and Russia's Anna Sidorova (1-0) turned back South Korea's Eun Jung Kim 9-6).

Canada plays Russia in its only game of Sunday.

Earleir Saturday, Homan made a delicate inturn tap in the second end to score four and power the Canadian champs to a 9-3 win over China's Bingyu Wang.

Wang had attempted a freeze to get out of the end, but left just enough air for Homan to make the shot that would propel Canada to victory in its opening assignment in the 12-team round robin.

"It's nice to make those big shots; we weren't really sure about the line — it's Game 1, second end, so we hadn't seen that line yet," said Homan, whose team is rounded out by vice-skip Emma Miskew, second Joanne Courtney, lead Lisa Weagle and alternate Cheryl Kreviazuk.

"But we guessed as best as we could and we made some big shots to get an early lead."

Canada would extend its lead to 5-0 with a stolen point in the fourth end when Wang was light with her draw. China managed to crawl back into the game with singles in the fifth, seventh and eighth ends.

But Homan finished it off with a draw for three in the ninth end that prompted handshakes.


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