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Italy's Retornaz beats Japan's Yanagisawa in opening draw at Grand Slam's National

Joel Retornaz Joel Retornaz - The Canadian Press

PICTOU, N.S. — Italy's Joel Retornaz scored three points in the first end en route to a 7-4 win over Japan's Riku Yanagisawa on Tuesday morning at the Grand Slam of Curling's Kioti National.

Retornaz, who won the season-opening Grand Slam last month in Niagara Falls, Ont., added deuces in the fourth and sixth ends of the round-robin opener.

Reigning world champion Bruce Mouat defeated James Craik 6-4 in a battle of Scottish teams. Switzerland's Yannick Schwaller topped Winnipeg's Reid Carruthers 7-5 and American Korey Dropkin edged Calgary's Kevin Koe 7-6.

Brad Gushue of St. John's, N.L., the defending champion of the event, won his opener by beating Owen Purcell of Halifax, N.S., 6-3 in six ends; Niklas Edin of Sweden got off to a good start by beating Ross Whyte of Scotland 5-2 in seven ends; Aaron Sluchinski of Airdrie, Alta., edged Matt Dunstone of Winnipeg 8-6; and Brendan Bottcher of Calgary rocked John Shuster of Duluth, Minn., 8-1 in five ends.

In women's play, Ottawa's Rachel Homan beat Winnipeg's Kate Cameron 7-5 and Kerri Einarson of Gimli, Man., defeated Winnipeg's Kaitlyn Lawes 6-4.

Sweden's Anna Hasselborg edged Korea's Seungyoun Ha 5-4 and Sweden's Isabella Wrana scored four in the final end for a 9-2 rout of Christina Black of Halifax.

In the women's late draw, Eun Ji Gim of South Korea won her opener by defeating Delaney Strouse of Traverse City, Mich., 12-4 in six ends; Satsuki Fujisawa of Japan won her opener by rocking Tabitha Peterson of St. Paul, Minn., 11-1 in five ends; Jennifer Jones and her Winnipeg-based crew won their opener by beating Stefani Constantini of Italy 10-3 in seven ends; and defending champion Silvana Tirinzoni of Switzerland won her opener by edging Clancy Grandy of Vancouver 6-4.

Play continues through Sunday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 7, 2023.