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Canada and Scotland to play for Winter Games NZ gold

Canada's Jennifer Jones and Brent Laing (Photo: Iain McGregor / WGNZ) will play Jayne Stirling / Fraser Kingan of Scotland in Audi quattro Winter Games Mixed Doubles Final.

Naseby, 30 August - Scotland and Canada won this morning's semi-finals at the Audi quattro Winter Games Mixed Doubles curling tournament in Naseby and will face off in the gold medal match this afternoon.

Scotland beat Norway in a high scoring game. The Scots took four points in the third end, and then a crucial steal of two in the next when Maia and Magnus Ramsfjell could find no to the button for Norway. When their last shot in the seventh end wrecked on a guard, the teams shook hands with the score at 12-7.

"That was a really good game to play," said Scotland's Fraser Kingan. "The icy was a bit tricky at times, and it just seemed that we got on top of it a bit better than they did. It was a real back and forwards game, and we're really happy to come out of it with a win."

Jayne Stirling added, "We had a couple of unlucky moments and so did they. We got a couple of lucky ones, and then played some really good shots to score good when we could, and they paid off."

The other semi-final between Canada and USA was a much closer affair. The lead changed hands five times, and there was never more than a point between the teams through the first seven ends.

In the last end the Canadians forced USA to attempt a draw for one to force an extra end. Sarah Anderson and Korey Dropkin swept their stone furiously but it came up just short, giving Canada the steal and the game 7-5.

Jennifer Jones was in a cheerful mood after the game. "Well, we've found our way to final, and were having an amazing time here in Naseby."

Brent Laing commented on their week. "It's been great to meet some New Zealanders and Aussie curlers who we don't run into on the tour, hear their story, and find out what curling's like down here. And it's quite a different environment. It's always great to meet new curlers."

The finals get under way at Naseby's Maniototo rink at 3:30 pm this afternoon (Thursday 30 August). Canada and Scotland will play for the gold medal, while Norway and USA will contest the bronze.

The final is to be filmed and a 30-minute highlights package will be broadcast on TVNZ and Duke several times from this weekend.

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