Thursday, March 18, 2010

2010 Women's World Championship Begins This Weekend

The 2010 Ford Women's World Curling Championship tournament gets underway this weekend in Swift Current, Saskatchewan. Now that much of the work for my day job is behind me, I may be able to post more (and more provocative) notes about the tournament. I confess that I am looking forward to watching as much of it as I can (and will likely be doing much of my day-job work between draws or in the wee hours of the morning).

The team rosters are available, inter alia, here at TSN. It will be fun to watch some of the familiar teams, but it will also be fun to see how some of the newcomers do, too.

I haven't checked the odds. Have any of the readers here found them? My guess is that the Canadian-Chinese team (so-called because they practically live in Leduc, Alberta, where they practice and work out most of the time) are favoured to win. They won the championship last year and had a good showing at the 2010 Olympics, despite not winning the gold there. I somewhat tentatively pick them to repeat this year.

But with Annette Norberg not representing Sweden this year, surely a second favourite team must be the Jennifer Jones rink representing Canada. The Canadian rink did not do so well last year at the world championships, nor did they look like world-beaters at the Olympic trials last December, but they have been very good over the past five years or so. At the same time, though, (see below) the current team representing Sweden might very well be one of the favourites.

But maybe my sense about the qualities of the various teams is affected too much by my familiarity with some of them. Here is the World Curling Federation's ranking of the women's teams as of the end of February (others are included in a longer table at their site):

Womens ranking as of 2010-02-28

Rank Association TOTAL 2008/2009 + / -
1 Sweden 1 064 2 1
2 Canada 1 002 1 -1
3 China 818 5 2
4 Switzerland 761 3 -1
5 Denmark 684 4 -1
6 Scotland/GBR 554 7 1
7 USA 525 6 -1
8 Germany 491 11 3
9 Russia 481 8 -1
10 Japan 476 10 0
11 Norway 288 9 -2
12 Italy 212 12 0
13 Korea 150 13 0
14 Czech Republic 131 14 0



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