Evolving Canadian Mixed Doubles Curlers, Reflections on the Olympic Selection Process



The cancellation of the Mixed Doubles curling trials generated a wide variety of emotions among the players, highlighting a handful of issues, particularly regarding the lineup and the selection process as a whole.

The team that will be sent to Beijing will now be chosen by Curling Canada, the Canadian Olympic Committee and Own the Podium.

The news of the reveal has left many players in limbo as to how a team will be chosen and how to prepare in case they are chosen.

“It’s a tough subject, for sure,” Kerri Einarson told CBC Sports’ This curling show. “The teams are going to be injured anyway, so I’m really happy not to make that decision. There will be a lot of different feedback from a whole bunch of players I’m sure and everyone wants to. go.”

WATCH | Einarson hopes to be selected for Olympic mixed doubles:

Kerri Einarson wants to be Canada’s choice for Olympic mixed doubles

After winning the Canadian Mixed Doubles Curling Championship, Kerri Einarson said the selection for the Olympic team would be a “draw,” but she is hoping to get the green light with her new partner Brad Jacobs. 3:31

The cancellation announcement came on December 26, following an increase in COVID-19 cases among gamers, with the event scheduled to run from December 28 to January 2 in Portage la Prairie, Man.

Given the limited time of three weeks available to athletes before flying to Beijing, questions arise as to why the trials were scheduled so close to the Winter Games.

“COVID has brought this to light, that by being so close you don’t have any contingency plan, you can’t reprogram it,” Chelsea Carey said.

“But also, it doesn’t give the team time to rest and recover and then prepare properly. It doesn’t allow our teams to be included in Olympic marketing because they don’t know in time, where most of the sport was decided much earlier. “

Who can, should be selected?

Applying the points system in place for top teams is one of the most debated topics before selection, while experience is also a factor that some believe should be a primary consideration.

Currently, Brett Gallant and Jocelyn Peterman lead the standings, but both players are already set to compete in the Olympics for both the men’s and women’s teams.

In second place are the duo of Jennifer Jones and Brent Laing, with Tyrel Griffith and Nancy Martin in third, John Epping and Lisa Weagle in fourth and reigning Olympic champion John Morris, as well as his new partner, Rachel Homan in fifth.

Einarson, who won the national title in March with Brad Gushue, is 23rd with new partner Brad Jacobs.

“You look, CTRS [Canadian Team Ranking System] ranking. These teams that have spent all this time playing in mixed doubles, and for me unfortunately I don’t have time to play both, ”said Einarson. “It’s difficult… The teams who have devoted this time also deserve to go.

“As the reigning Canadian champion, and I know people might just look and say ‘she just played two events’, but I did really well in both. So it’s a draw, it’s a tough decision. “

WATCH | Wayne and Kim Tuck want Curling Canada to make a decision:

Wayne and Kim Tuck criticize Canada’s mixed doubles curling program

The married curling duo say Canada needs the right infrastructure to create a stand-alone mixed doubles program, separate from team curling. 2:12

For Wayne and Kim Tuck, who withdrew after testing positive for COVID-19, the pair had mixed opinions on who and how the teams should be selected.

” Let in [the] COC and Own the Podium – honestly I think that’s a scapegoat for Curling Canada. Let them make a decision and they won’t have to look at the points and what everyone else has done before, ”Wayne said.

“Honestly, they’ll be watching Johnny Mo [Morris] and Rachel [Homan], because they were at the Olympics. In my opinion, the three teams that should be considered are [Griffith] and [Martin] and Rachel and John, but my choice would be Peterman and Gallant. “

For Kim, it’s more about having a mixed doubles team rather than one that’s already heading to the Olympics.

“I don’t think you need to take a four-person team out yet,” she said. “I think Nancy and Ty deserve to go based on being the top ranked CMDRs. [Canadian Mixed Doubles Ranked] team, but I actually think the choice will be Johnny Mo and Rachel, and I think it will go to what they think is important and that will be the Olympic experience. “

Of the top five in the ranking system, only the Griffith and Martin duo don’t have at least one player already going to the Games, and from Griffith’s perspective, he just hopes, whatever the decision, that it does. helps the mixed doubles program. .

“I would really like to see, whatever the selection made, [that] it has an impact in mixed doubles, ”said Griffith. “I really think there is an opportunity in Canada for us to develop the game of mixed doubles. I’m quite a novice, I’ve only been playing mixed doubles for four years, it’s my first full Olympic cycle.

“Looking forward I would like to see tons of growth in this area and I think this decision could weigh heavily on that and the teams supporting the mixed doubles will be watching this decision as well.”

WATCH | This Curling Show, Full Episode:

Mixed doubles curlers debate who should represent Canada at the Olympics

With a gold medal in mixed doubles to defend, curlers Kerri Einarson, Wayne and Kim Tuck, Tyrel Griffith and Chelsea Carey are voting on who they think should represent Canada. 1:12:06

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