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Team Homan's path to gold at the World Women's Curling Championship


For the first time in history, the BKT Tires World Women’s Curling Championship will be played in Nova Scotia.

Sydney’s Centre 200, located on the beautiful island of Cape Breton, will host the 45th version of the event, which dates back to 1979 when Switzerland’s Gaby Casanova captured the gold medal after dispatching Canada’s Lindsay Sparkes in the semifinal and Sweden's Birgitta Törn in the final. 

This year’s world championship will feature 13 teams from around the globe, including five teams in the top 10 of the world rankings in Canada’s Rachel Homan (No. 1), Switzerland’s Silvana Tirinzoni (No. 2), South Korea’s Eunji Gim (No. 3), Sweden’s Anna Hasselborg (No. 5), and Italy’s Stefania Constantini (No. 9).

The teams will compete in a 12-game round-robin, with the top two rinks advancing straight to the semis. In the qualification round, the third-seeded team will take on No. 6, while No. 4 will play No. 5 with spots to the semifinals on the line.

It would appear Canada and Switzerland are the front-runners entering the tournament.

Team Homan is putting together one of the most dominant curling seasons in history (more on that later) while Team Tirinzoni is looking to capture an incredible fifth straight world title and the ninth in the last 12 years for the country.

You can watch all of Canada’s games throughout the week in Sydney as well as every playoff game on TSN, and the TSN App.

Let’s take a closer look at the main storylines and the top contenders for this year’s World Women’s Curling Championship.


Can Team Homan continue their incredible run?

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Ottawa’s Team Homan – featuring skip Rachel Homan, third Tracy Fleury, second Emma Miskew and lead Sarah Wilkes – has been the best team in the world so far in 2023-24.

Now in their second season as a foursome, the members of Team Homan have posted a total record of 48-5, including 39-1 against Canadian rinks and 9-4 against international teams.

They’ve played in eight events and won six, highlighted by capturing the past two Grand Slams and a memorable 11-0 run at February’s Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Calgary.

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Homan (91 per cent), Fleury (89 per cent) and Wilkes (89 per cent) all led their respective positions in shooting percentage at the Scotties, while Miskew (86 per cent) was second behind Shannon Birchard.

Their dominance can probably be attributed to Homan’s return to full-time skip duties and an overall stronger chemistry as a team. In their first season together in 2022-23, Team Homan experimented with Fleury, the newcomer on the squad, calling the game and Homan throwing last stones with long-time third Miskew moving to the second position.

Despite some nice results, Homan and company missed the page playoffs at the Tournament of Hearts in Kamloops. With Homan taking back the house this year, the entire team has looked more comfortable with their roles and each other. That was no more apparent than during the perfect performance at national championship.

Thanks to Team Homan’s strong play, Canada might have their best chance to claim gold at the women’s worlds since 2018, when Jennifer Jones and her Winnipeg-based team stood atop the podium in North Bay.

With Homan – and long-time teammate Miskew – winning their fourth career Hearts title this year, the 34-year-old mother of three will represent Canada at the world championship for the first time since 2017 when she posted a perfect 13-0 record to win gold.

Homan and Miskew also won silver in 2013 in Saint John, N.B., and a bronze medal at the 2013 women’s worlds in Riga, Latvia.

The competition in Sydney will be stiff, led by four-time defending champion Team Tirinzoni. The Canadians should have some confidence coming in as they’ve won all three of their games against the Swiss superstars this season, two of which came in Grand Slam finals.

ContentId(1.2089664): Miskew on Worlds field: The calibre of teams is significantly higher

Team Homan have won 16 straight games coming into this event.

Canada begins the pursuit of a record-extending 18th title at the women’s worlds on Saturday afternoon (1 p.m. ET on TSN1, and the TSN App) with a date against Sweden’s Team Hasselborg.


Swiss Dominance

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Team Homan have been dominant this season, but Silvana Tirinzoni’s rink from Aarau, Switzerland has controlled the women’s game on the international stage for the past four years.

Skip Tirinzoni, 44, and last rock thrower Alina Patz, 34, are the only curlers to have won four consecutive women’s world championships, playing with different combinations of front-end players along the way, including Carole Howald and Briar Schwaller-Hürlimann last year. This season, 25-year-old Selina Witschonke has replaced Schwaller-Hürlimann in the lineup.

The small change has not affected the team’s play on the ice in the slightest, amassing a total record of 67-13 with five event wins, highlighted by a near perfect run at Swiss nationals in early February and an 11-0 showing at the European Curling Championships in November.

Coming into Sydney, Tirinzoni’s teams have won an incredible 36 straight games at the World Women’s Curling Championship dating back to the Calgary bubble in 2021. That streak includes 14-0 runs at the past two championships.

It’s not just Tirinzoni’s rinks that have been dominant, but Switzerland as a whole. Four different skips – Mirjam Ott (2012), Binia Feltscher-Beeli (2014, 2016), Pätz (2015) and Tirinzoni (2019, 2021, 2022, 2023) – have led the European nation to eight gold-medal performances in the past 11 World Women’s Curling Championships.

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Switzerland now owns 10 women’s world titles, good enough for second best, seven behind Canada.

During her four-year reign, Tirinzoni has a total record of 53-5 at this event, including a perfect 4-0 against Canadian teams (1-0 against Chelsea Carey in 2019 and 3-0 against Kerri Einarson from 2021-2023).

Homan should be Tirinzoni’s toughest completion yet, and she will likely have to get past her in the playoffs to keep her curling dynasty on top.

The key for Switzerland will be the sharpshooting Patz.

The six-time world champion (won in 2012 as an alternate) has led all fourth throwers in shooting percentage in each of the last three women’s worlds, including 88.5 per cent last year in Sweden, eight points better than Italy’s Stefania Constantini, who was second.

They have a tough opener to start this year’s tournament, taking on South Korea’s Team Eunji Gim, ranked third in the world.


Who else will contend for gold in Cape Breton?

Eunji Gim (South Korea)

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Eunji Gim will make her fifth career appearance at the World Women’s Curling Championship for the South Koreans, but first since 2016.

The 34-year-old has played fourth a few times at the women’s worlds, with the 2024 tourney marking her first appearance as a full-time skip.

Team Gim’s 2023-24 campaign has been impressive, with more than 100 games played and a 78-24 record under their belts.

They’ve qualified in all but one of their 15 events, including wins at South Korea’s nationals, the Pan Continental Curling Championship and their first career Grand Slam victory at the National in November, defeating Homan in the final.

The busy schedule has led them to the third position on the world rankings.

Gim should be considered a solid favourite to reach the world championship podium for the first time in her career.


Anna Hasselborg (Sweden)

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Anna Hasselborg will look to capture her first gold medal at the women’s words and the first for Sweden since 2011 when Anette Norberg accomplished the feat in Denmark with a victory over Canada’s Amber Holland.

Team Hasselborg settled for silver in back-to-back years in 2018 and 2019 after striking gold at the 2018 Winter Olympics.

Three members of the team – Hasselborg, third Sara McManus and second Agnes Knochenhauer – have given birth in the past year and have a total of five kids, earning the moniker the Swedish Circus when they’re on the road.

Their chaotic off-ice lives haven’t affected their performance this season as Team Hasselborg own a 50-19 record with three event wins and playoff qualifications in all four Grand Slam events.

Hasselborg has dropped all three of her games against Homan this season.

The Swedish foursome have made the playoffs in each of their previous six appearances at the World Women’s Curling Championship and don’t expect that to change in Sydney.

We’ll have to wait and see if a spot on the podium is in their future against a stacked field.  


Who else can make some noise?

Stefania Constantini (Italy)

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Led by their 24-year-old skip Stefania Constantini, who won mixed-doubles gold at the 2022 Olympics, the Italians have had an up-and-down season that sees them ranked ninth in the world coming into Sydney.

They own a 50-36 record, highlighted by four final appearances and one win, but also a stretch where they lost 10 games in a row, including going 4-14 over four events.

Constantini has improved gradually over her previous four appearances at the women’s worlds, capped with her first playoff qualification last year.

Italy should be contenders to make the final six, but will need to find more consistency if they want to make it on the podium for the first time in the country’s history.


Tabitha Peterson (Untied States)

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Two-time Olympian Tabitha Peterson, 35, will be making her seventh career appearance at the World Women’s Curling Championship, looking for her first podium finish since capturing bronze inside the Calgary bubble in 2021.

On the season, Minnesota’s Team Peterson is 37-25 with two event wins and playoff appearances in just one of four Grand Slam events.


Marianne Roervik (Norway)

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Norway’s Team Marianne Roervik topped Canada’s Team Kerri Einarson in last year’s world semifinal before losing the gold-medal game to Switzerland.

The second-place finish marked Norway’s 14th medal at the event and first since 2005.

Team Roervik is 30-19 with no event wins this season.


Madeleine Dupont (Denmark)

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Madeleine Dupont is no stranger to the World Women’s Curling Championship as the 37-year-old Danish skip will make her 15th appearance in Sydney.

Dupont has a silver medal from 2007 and a bronze from 2009 as well as a gold medal from the 2022 European Curling Championships.


Rebecca Morrison (Scotland)

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This marks the third appearance for 27-year-old Rebecca Morrison at the women’s worlds.

She and her Scottish team were forced to forfeit most of their games in 2022 due to a COVID-19 outbreak on the team before posting a 3-9 record last year.

Olympic champion Jennifer Dodds, formerly of Eve Muirhead's rink, is the team’s new third this season, which could make all the difference in Nova Scotia.


The Rest of the Field

The Field

Country Skip World Ranking
 Canada  Rachel Homan  1
 Denmark  Madeleine Dupont  36
Estonia   Liisa Turmann  188
Italy  Stefania Constantini   9
 Japan Miyu Ueno  30
 Korea  Eun-ji Gim  3
 New Zealand Jessica Smith   118
Norway   Marianne Rørvik  22
Scotland  Rebecca Morrison   17
 Sweden  Anna Hasselborg   5
 Switzerland Silvana Tirinzoni   2
 Türkiye Dilşat Yıldız   55
United States   Tabitha Peterson  15

Miyu Ueno (Japan) – Japan will be skipped by a new face this year after 23-year-old Miyu Ueno outlasted Satsuki Fujisawa at the national championship earlier this season.

Dilşat Yıldız (Turkey) – Turkey will make its third appearance at the World Women’s Curling Championship and are once again skipped by 27-year-old Dilşat Yıldız. After going 2-10 in their debut two years ago, the team went 6-6 last year in Sweden. Are a few more wins and possible playoff contention in the cards for Turkey this year?

Jessica Smith (New Zealand) – Jessica Smith and the Kiwis are back for a second straight year after going winless in their debut in 2023.

Liisa Turmann (Estonia) – The 33-year-old Turmann skips the Estonians, but throws second stones. This is the second appearance at the women’s worlds for Estonia, finishing with a 1-12 record in 2021. That team was also skipped by Turmann.