Wales 28-34 England,
Wales 38-26 Ireland,
Wales 32-22 Scotland
Wales’ curlers returned down the M6 with two trophies to their name after a successful weekend at the Four Nations.
Day Two (Sunday) started with Wales picking up against England with a sizeable deficit to overcome. We were 8 shots behind England after the two Mixed matches, and there was a mixed response to it during the early session. The Ladies did well, despite a slow start, by taking an 11-5 victory. The men, of whom I was a team member, also started by trading 1-shot ends, but mid-way through the game the character changed.
England, helped by impressive shot-making by skip Tommy Campbell, took a 4 and it was difficult to mount a comeback. Despite best efforts, the men lost 9-5, giving the Kay Trophy to England by a 6-shot margin.
In the second session, Wales faced Ireland and we already held a 5-shot lead after the first day’s play.
Both Wales teams initially struggled, with the men falling 5-1 behind at one stage, and the ladies had to recover from arrears of 3-1, which together wiped out our advantage. As the matches progressed, the pendulum swung back the other way, and good play led to Laura Beever’s team taking victory 12-8, despite a comeback by the Irish in the final end. Adrian Meikle’s team also took victory 8-6, mainly due to their own play, but also as their opposition’s final stone took a pick-up and failed to reach the centre of the house. It meant Wales retained the Meikle Trophy by a 38-27 margin.
Finally came the men’s and ladies’ matches against Scotland. A big-scoring end for the Scottish ladies meant an otherwise tight game was narrowly lost, and the men suffered a similar fate on the only inconsistent ice we had all weekend.
Overall, everyone enjoyed the weekend, and we returned having lost just one of the three trophies won last year. Next year’s competition is likely to be at a similar time at a rink in southern England, organised by the ECA.
Some photos courtesy of Bill Gray, Irish Curling Association.