Murdoch’s Men Go Big In Japan

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Team Murdoch’s return to form has gathered momentum with victory in a World Curling Tour event in Japan.

The Olympic champions, who hinted at a return to their very best when beating Brad Jacobs’ Olympic champions on the way to the knockout stages in a Grand Slam event at the Canadian Open the previous week, proved invincible at the Karuizawa International.

Victories over Haiyato Matsumura’s local rink as well as another Japanese rink led by Hiroshi Fukui, a highly experienced German team led by Alexander Baumann and Norway’s Team Holberg took them into the play-offs in pole position.

They then saw Korea’s Team Kim in the semi-finals before facing Pat Simmons’ highly rated rink in the final.

The Scots seized the initiative by claiming a double at the opening end and while, after four blanked ends, their Canadian opponents levelled things at the sixth end, they held their nerve impressively, exchanging shots at the next two before claiming the single they needed at the last to take the title.

“We have had a tremendous couple of weeks with good results at the Canadian Open and now a win at the Karuizawa International," the victorious skip said afterwards.

"We had a month of very detailed practice prior to these events and the hard work has paid off. I feel now that we are coming into strong form at the right time of the season.

"What we need to do now is carry this momentum forward and execute our goals,” he concluded.

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