CALGARY — The biggest concern for Team Canada heading into the World Curling Championship at the Markin McPhail Centre in Calgary was the health of third Darren Moulding.
The 38-year-old had to retire from the mixed doubles championship a couple of weeks back when he suffered back spasms.
Moulding threw some rocks last week and has pronounced himself healthy for the worlds, which kick off Friday.
“My back feels great. I’ve had some really good treatment and it feels good and ready to go,” Moulding said.
“I’ve been throwing a little bit and looking forward to being out on the ice.”
KENNEDY JOINS AS FIFTH
Some big news came out over the weekend as Team Canada picked up veteran curler Marc Kennedy. He’ll join the team as the fifth. He’ll also be ready to step in if Moulding’s back starts to bother him again.
Kennedy will add some invaluable experience to a team that’s never competed at this level. Kennedy said he’s going to help out whatever way he can.
“I think it’s important that we support our Canadian champs any way we can,” the 39-year-old said.
That’s why I’m here so anything they need from me that’s why I’m here whether it’s charting rocks or you know anything at all.”
BUILDING OFF BRIER
Getting through the Brier is no easy task so you’d think the Bottcher rink will be battle-tested. Skip Brendan Bottcher hopes that will be an advantage but he also knows the caliber of the teams he’s competing against won’t make anything easy.
He said his team needs to play as well as they did in the Brier. Maybe even better.
“I thought we maybe struggled a little bit early,” Bottcher said.
“We picked up some momentum mid-week and then played our absolute best on the weekend. That’s going to be a similar level of play we’ll need to bring at the worlds too.”
“I’m not expecting anything less than everyone playing their best against us.”
PROUD TO WEAR THE RED AND WHITE
It’s going to be a new experience for Bottcher, Moulding, second Karrick Martin and lead Brad Thiessen. They’ve never represented Canada at this level. Bottcher said they team is super-excited to be wearing the red and white.
“That’s a really cool feeling that you’ve got to savour and take a lot of pride in,” Bottcher said. “I think past that, you’ve got to get back to business. You’ve got to focus on the task in front of you and we’re going to have to come out and play our absolute best right off the hop. We’ve got one of the toughest teams in the world right out of the gate.”
That team would be Hammy McMillan’s rink from Scotland. Team Canada faces them Friday morning at 9:00 a.m.