2009 World Junior Curling Championship
Every year, the top under-21 year old curlers from around world meet at the World Junior Curling Championships to compete for gold. The finals wrapped up this weekend, with Scotland winning gold for women's and Denmark for men's.
Familiar and Not-so Familiar Winners
Being the champions at the last two tournaments, the Scottish women's team led by Eve Muirhead was favorite to win coming into the 2009 WJCC. On the men's side, however, Denmark pulled a surprise victory over the favored Canadian team. Before this, Denmark had failed to appear on the podium since 2001. Canada's men's team, on the other hand, had won gold in 2005, 2006 and 2007.
Strong Canadian Teams Barely Missed Gold
The Canadian women's team, led by Kaitlyn Lawes was actually favored to win gold going into the finals, as they had already succeeded in beating the Scottish team convincingly early on in the round robin stage of the tournament. As well, they had beat the top seeded Swiss team for the right to play Scotland for the gold.
The women's match was a close game that came down to the very last rock. Lawes tried for a difficult curl bump to take the two guaranteed points needed for a victory, but only grazed the Scotland rock that was on the button, which meant Scotland managed to steal one point and win with a score of 8-6.
Bronze still sweet for USA and Switzerland
Last year's champs, USA's men's team, lost to Denmark in the semi-finals but managed to come on top over Sweden to take Bronze. The American team played a strong and aggressive game, beating the Swedes 9-4. The American women's team, however, did not qualify for the semi-finals, placing fifth overall.
The women from Switzerland were very impressive this year, coming out of the round robin as top seed with a 7-2 standing. They lost to Canada in the semi-finals but managed to edge a narrow victory over Russia. Neither Switzerland or Russia have appeared on the podium since they won gold in 2005 and 2006 respectively.
GOLD - Denmark
SILVER - Canada
BRONZE - USA
Runner Ups - Sweden, Norway, Switzerland
GOLD - Scotland
SILVER - Canada
BRONZE - Switzerland
Runner Ups - Russia, USA, Sweden