Many thanks to everyone who brought prizes and bought tickets at the ICA Stranraer Weekend Grand Raffle on the Saturday evening – the fantastic total of £383 was raised for ICA funds.
Irish mixed doubles champions, Neil and Alison Fyfe, are currently in Switzerland, playing for the 3rd International Mixed Doubles Trophy in Aarau.
Once again they were drawn to play double Olympic champion and multiple world and European champion skip, Anette Norberg from Sweden, and her MD partner, Vincent Stenberg. They put up a blinding display of MD curling against probably the best female curler of her generation.
Neil reports: “Our first game was against Annette Norberg and Vincent Stenberg (a re run of the first Netherlands 🇳🇱 game. The Swedish duo started off well taking a single shot in ends 1 and 2, however Team Fyfe equaled the score after 4 ends by taking a single in the third end then stealing a single in the 4th.
There is a fantastic slideshow of photos taken yesterday by Andrew Mitchell and Wiktoria Chorostkowska on the Greenacres Ice Rink website, follow this link:
It’s not long now till we embark on our annual pilgrimage to Stranraer for our Irish International Bonspiel weekend. Once again, PJD Wilson and Louise Kerr are in charge and we are pleased to announce that the draw for the 4 game Schenkel format has been made, verified by an independent panel (if you believe that you’ll believe anything) and ready to publish. As you can see we are still one team short but we will undoubtedly fill the gap. If however, you have a team ready and waiting, let PJ know.
Saturday 9am and 1 pm:
|Craig Whyte v Tommy Campbell|
|John Graham v Peter JD Wilson|
|Jim Cullen v John Gilmore|
|Arran Cameron v A N Other|
Saturday 11am and 3pm:
|Michael Sutherland v Bill Gray|
|John Wilson v Bill Byers|
|Ian Donald v Johnjo Kenny|
|Peter Wilson v Andy Robinson|
A fantastic performance from an ICA ladies team at the weekend saw them win the prestigious Haggis at Greenacres.
Team member Ailsa Anderson reports: ” The Irish ladies once again took part in the Haggis bonspiel at Greenacres and hoped to improve upon their low road success in 2016. A team of Jacqui Barr, Jen Ward, Alison Fyfe and Ailsa Anderson played their first game against local team, Drew Gemmell. The ice was particularly tricky with both teams struggling at the beginning of the game to get used to the conditions. However, following a slow start the ladies managed to secure a win (7-4). In a repeat of 2016, the ladies played the Irish mens team in the second game. As always, a “friendly” rivalry was had and ultimately the “friendly” result was a peel (7-7). Both teams were then subject to the torment of stats from Coach, Martin Sutherland, before dinner could be served.
“The following morning feeling refreshed the ladies took on Jack Steven, whose team included Alison and Ross Barr. Despite Team Steven slowly edging in front, the ladies were able to secure a few stolen ends and the score was close going into the last. The ladies were well placed for the steal however a hit from the opposing skip’s last stone meant the ladies could only steal one and another peeled game.
“The accumulation of ends meant the ladies narrowly qualified for the High Road coming second in their section. Next they played Team John Summers in the High Road semi-final. The ladies (assisted by Coach) dominated the game and won the game 11-2 after 6 ends.
“So, the High Road final awaited. Fortunately, the ladies were joined by super sub, Charlotte Tierney, who had patiently waited all weekend for a game. The Ladies were faced against Garry Coombs and his Welsh counterparts who had beaten Team Steven (whom the girls had played earlier) in the other High Road semi. After a relatively slow start, the ladies were 4-0 down going into the 3rd. However, a score of 3 and a steal of 1 levelled the score. The ladies stepped up their game and eventually ran the Welsh men out of stones in the 8th end, securing the win 8-5.
“A great weekend’s work and a major confidence boost for the ladies ahead of the European C-Division in May. Thank you must go to all the ICA members who came out to support the ladies during the course of the weekend.”
Neil reports: “In our first game we were drawn against the Swedish pairing of double Olympic champion and multiple times world champion Annette Norberg and her partner Vincent Stenberg. They had the advantage of having already played a game earlier in the day. We played badly and were well beaten 10-2. The ice was quite tricky – but lightening fast after being slow for the first few shots. We both struggled to find draw weight throughout the game – which was not good. There was no practice before the game – apart from one practice draw for Alison who was nominated to do the LSD for that game.
“In our second game we played Judith and Lee McCleary from Scotland (what a lovely couple they are). They have played here a couple of times before and got the hang of the ice before we did and sailed into a 7-0 lead after the second end. We played a bit better after that taking a 2 in the third and after restricting our opponents to a 1 in 4th then took a 1 in the 5th – but conceded after the sixth when the McCleary team took another two. They are a very strong pair and barely missed a shot between them.
” In the last game of the round robin stage Team Fyfe played the Polish team of Adela Walczak and Kasper Knebloch. The Irish pair started off well taking a three in the first end. The Polish pair played well and after 6 ends had reduced the deficit to two shots. Neil and Alison elected to play their power play in the seventh – however this went disastrously wrong with poor shots from both players and the Polish pair took a three. In the final end Alison had the choice of playing a difficult draw to the 4 foot to draw the game – or playing an equally difficult skinny double to take a two and win the game. The latter option was selected and successfully played. A second (but messy) win for Team Fyfe!
“The Dutch organisers and volunteers did an excellent job and the competition was very enjoyable.”
It was a very busy weekend for ICA curlers – all over the place, we were. The men held their championship and Euro C League playdowns in Dumfries, the men and women senior squads were at the inaugural Kinross over 40s weekend and Neil and Alison were playing in the Dutch Masters CCT Mixed Doubles competition in Zoetermeer.
First, the men…….. In a best of three challenge, James Russell, John Furey, Craig Whyte, Arran Cameron won game one 8-3 and game two 8-6 against Dave Hibberd, Alan Mitchell, Bob Sherrard, Ross Barr and Andrew Gilmore, so no third game on the Sunday was required.
The winning team won the right to represent Ireland in the Euro C League in Andorra May.6-13.
We held our Xmas Bonspiel at Hamilton on Thursday with four teams contesting the perpetual trophy and also prizes organised by Craig Whyte.
We struggled a little for teams but in the end, due to late fill ins by Ruth Burns (daughter of John) and also David and Jonathon Imlah from Brisbane, we went ahead with a full complement.
The winners (both games were very close) were James Russell, Martin Sutherland, Ian Donald and Clare McCormick. Thanks to all but especially to the Imlah’s for coming all the way from Brisbane just to play in the Bonspiel (!!)