A day after Curling Canada announced the 2021 national championships would be played in a Calgary "bubble," CURLSASK revealed on Wednesday that this season's Saskatchewan provincial championships - the Viterra Scotties Provincial Women’s Championship and the SaskTel Tankard Provincial Men’s Championship - won't be held in the host city of Estevan.
A clarification was needed after it appeared CURLSASK had cancelled the playdowns all together.
"CURLSASK has four scenarios to declare Saskatchewan’s Representatives for the Tim Hortons Brier and Scotties Tournament of Hearts, these are focused on preserving elements of open entry and competition," they said in a tweet. "This announcement is simply confirming that Estevan & Affinity place will not serve as the host community for this years Championship. Further details will be provided as soon as possible."
According to Claire Hanna of CTV Saskatoon, CURLSASK will wait until Jan. 7 before making a decision on its provincial championships.
The events were scheduled to take place simultaneously at Affinity Place in Estevan from January 29 – February 7, 2021.
“Under current public health orders this championship was no longer feasible nor financially responsible to attempt to host,” said CURLSASK Executive Director Ashley Howard. “Estevan has served as a first-class host community for a number of events including the 2018 SaskTel Tankard and 2018 Home Hardware Canada Cup of Curling. Given the success of past Championships hosted by the community of Estevan, our team will not hesitate to return to Estevan when it is safe and responsible to do so.”
The 2021 Scotties Tournament of Hearts, Tim Hortons Brier, World Men's Curling Championship and Canadian Mixed Doubles Championship are all scheduled to take place in the Calgary bubble at Markin MacPhail Centre at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park in early 2021.
Still, questions remain regarding when and if provincial and territorial championships can be played given restrictions and rising COVID-19 cases in some parts of Canada. The Northern Ontario Curling Association have already alluded they might anoint last year's provincial champions - Brad Jacobs and Krista McCarville - if they are unable to host a tournament this season due to the pandemic.
Robyn Silvernagle and Matt Dunstone represented Saskatchewan at last year's national championships.