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Jones, Laing open world mixed doubles curling championship with two wins

Jennifer Jones Jennifer Jones - WCF / Eakin Howard

GANGNEUNG, Korea, Republic Of — The Canadian combo of Jennifer Jones and Brent Laing rolled to a pair of impressive victories on the opening day of world mixed doubles curling championship on Saturday in South Korea.

The husband and wife team from Winnipeg beat Scotland's Bruce Mouat and Jennifer Dodds in the opening game to start the 20-team, week-long competition. Canada then capped a successful first day by doubling Vanessa Tonoli and Wouter Goesgens of the Netherlands 10-5 in the evening draw.

“It settles you down a little bit,” said Laing of the wins. “It's nice to get a big win to start for sure. And then you're excited about that and you regroup and you have to go out and do it again and then you just got to keep doing that every day.”

The Canadians scored four in the first end, stole one in the second and then coasted to an 8-4 victory over the Scots.

Canada allowed Scotland to score one in the third, two in the fifth and one in the seventh, while scoring one in the fourth, two in the sixth, leading to handshakes after seven ends.

Jones curled 89 per cent in the game, while Laing was 73. Dodds curled 70 per cent while Mouat was 65.

Jones’s precise draw in the fifth end produced a score of three to take a 6-1 lead. The Netherlands gained those three back in the sixth, but after trading singles, Jones made an open hit in the eighth for three to secure the win.

Canada sits tied with Australia at 2-0 atop the Group A standings. Japan, Norway, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States, all at 1-1, sit tied for first in Group B.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 21, 2023.