PICTOU COUNTY, N.S. — The playoff picture has now been set for the KIOTI Tractor Tour Challenge Tier 1 men’s division.
Winnipeg’s Team Mike McEwen and Team Niklas Edin of Sweden punched the final tickets to the quarterfinals after advancing out of Saturday morning’s tiebreakers at the Pictou County Wellness Centre.
Mike McEwen in action at the 2019 KIOTI Tractor Tour Challenge in Pictou County, N.S. (Anil Mungal)
McEwen, who has won seven Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling titles, avenged a round-robin loss to Scotland’s Team Bruce Mouat with a 7-3 decision. Team McEwen, which shot a sharp 93 per cent as a unit, scored three in the first and added deuces in the third and the fifth while limiting their opponents to single points.
The double defending world champion Edin scored two in the eighth end to lift his team past Winnipeg’s Team Jason Gunnlaugson 6-5.
Edin now meets top seed Team Brad Gushue in the men’s quarterfinals at 4:30 p.m. AT. The St. John’s, N.L., crew finished atop of the table alongside Edmonton’s Team Brendan Bottcher with matching 4-0 records, however, Gushue had a superior draw-to-the-button shootout tally over the course of the week to lock down the No. 1 spot.
Bottcher will battle McEwen while Calgary’s Team Kevin Koe clashes with Team John Shuster of the United States and Team Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie goes up against Team Glenn Howard of Penetanguishene in an all-Ontario matchup.
Koe, Shuster, Jacobs and Howard all qualified Friday with 3-1 records.
The Tier 1 women’s quarterfinals kick things off at 12:30 p.m. AT with Switzerland’s Team Silvana Tirinzoni vs. Team Kerri Einarson of Gimli, Man., Team Nina Roth of the United States vs. Winnipeg’s Team Jennifer Jones, Team Anna Hasselborg of Sweden vs. Edmonton’s Team Kelsey Rocque and Team Tracy Fleury of East St. Paul, Man., vs. Japan’s Team Satsuki Fujisawa.
Tier 2 women’s playoffs
- Kim vs. Balsdon
- Feltscher vs. Peterson
- Duncan vs. Je. Murphy
- Brown vs. Birt
Tier 2 men’s playoffs
- Horgan vs. Ruohonen
- Van Dorp vs. Muyres
- Bryce vs. TBD
- Fournier vs. Ja. Murphy
The broadcast resumes with around-the-rings coverage of the women’s quarterfinals at 12:30 p.m. AT / 11:30 a.m. ET on Sportsnet. Online streaming is available via Sportsnet NOW (Canada) and Yare (international).
Also, watch the men’s quarterfinals at 4:30 p.m. AT / 3:30 p.m. ET on Sportsnet and the semifinals at 8:30 p.m. AT / 7:30 p.m. ET on Sportsnet 360.
The KIOTI Tractor Tour Challenge is the second of six events on the 2019-20 Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling schedule. … Winners of the Tier 1 divisions earn $30,000 and berths to the season-ending Humpty’s Champions Cup. … Also up for grabs in the Tier 1 are Pinty’s Cup bonus points. The leaders following the conclusion of the Players’ Championship in April will capture the Pinty’s Cup with additional prize money awarded. … Winners of the Tier 2 divisions earn $10,000 and promotions to face the world’s best at the 2020 Meridian Canadian Open.