Fresh from their latest world championship bid Team Muirhead will lead the Scottish challenge at a major new event – the EDF Energy City of Perth Ladies International – on home ice this week (March 31 – April 3).
Skip Eve Muirhead, the 2013 world champion and her rink finished fifth at this year’s event in Canada, earning vital Olympic qualifying points for Great Britain and coming close to doing even better, just missing out on the play offs.
This inaugural event, which gets underway tomorrow at The Dewars Centre in Perth, just a few miles down the road from Muirhead’s native Pitlochry and where she developed her skills as a youngster, offers an immediate opportunity to get back into top flight action as she and team-mates Anna Sloan, Vicki Adams and Sarah Reid take on some of the world’s best players.
With BBC ALBA providing live televised coverage throughout this new addition to the Champions Curling Tour calendar, they face a world class field that has attracted 20 teams from across the world as well as a strong Scottish contingent seeking to maximise home advantage.
Bill Duncan, Chair of the City of Perth Ladies International Organising Committee said, “Nine different countries will be represented at our women’s international which has attracted an excellent field in its very first year and will showcase the highest calibre of curling. Our new event not only provides our curlers with a high level of competition experience, it also provide locals and visitors alike a great opportunity to come and witness some of the world’s best curlers in action in Scotland and a great excuse to visit our Fair City.
He added, “We are extremely grateful to our title sponsor EDF Energy and to CCT events and their sponsor Le Gruyere AOP as well as Perth and Kinross Council and Mercure Perth Hotel who have helped to make this event possible.
“We are also delighted that BBC ALBA is providing live coverage from our new event, which will help to establish our tournament on the international curling circuit and hopefully become as successful as our Perth Masters event, hosted earlier in the year which was also televised live for the first time by BBC ALBA.”
Nine games will be televised live on BBC ALBA from the opening day of action on Thursday through to the quarter finals, semi finals and the final on the fourth and final day of the CCT event. BBC ALBA’s commentary team comprises Calum Macaulay and former world champion Jackie Lockhart.
The BBC ALBA live coverage is as follows:
Thursday 31 March
16:00 – Gray (SCO) v Driendl (GER)
20:00 – Muirhead (SCO) v Biktimirova (RUS)
Friday 1 April
10:00 – Fleming (SCO) v Jackson (SCO)
14:00 – Fowler (ENG) v K Aitken (SCO)
Saturday 2 April
09:00 – Patz (SWI) v G Aitken (SCO)
14:00 – Tiebreakers/ranking
19:00 – Quarter final: B1 v C2
Sunday 3 April
09:00 – Semi Final
13:00 – Final
Curling fans will also be able to access live internet streaming of the event over the four days of competition.