• Winter Olympics

GB men's curling team guarantee medal

ESPN staff
February 19, 2014
David Murdoch secured victory for Great Britain's men's curling team with his final stone © Getty Images

Great Britain's men's curling team guaranteed themselves a medal at the Winter Olympics with a last-gasp 6-5 semi-final win over Sweden in Sochi.

The win set up a gold medal clash on Friday with Canada, who beat China 10-6. The only time GB's men have won curling gold was at the first Winter Olympics in 1924.

Trailing 5-4 in the last end, GB looked to be heading for the bronze medal match after Scott Andrews and Greg Drummond committed costly late mistakes.

However GB skip David Murdoch pounced after counterpart Niklas Edin's final stone failed to remove GB's solitary stone in the four-foot circle and instead took out one of his own. Murdoch kept his cool to land his final stone on the button and claim two points as well as the win.

"Incredible, I cannot describe the feeling," Murdoch told BBC Sport afterwards. "We have trained so hard for this and made a lot of sacrifices and it has paid off.

"You always believe and work hard, beating yourself up in training to be here. I am so proud of the guys and we have worked tirelessly for the last few years.

"We'll have a day to think about our gameplan against Canada. We just need to keep doing what we're doing."

His team-mate Drummond said: "I'm not going to lie, it was pretty nerve-wracking, that last end. They made a couple of mistakes [too] so they were obviously feeling the same as us."

GB will make it three medals at a Winter Olympics - their target at Sochi - for the first time since 1936, following Lizzy Yarnold's gold in the women's skeleton and Jenny Jones' bronze in the snowboard slopestyle.

Jennifer Jones clinched victory over GB's women's team with a perfect final stone © PA Photos

It could even be four medals for the first time since the inaugural Games in Chamonix, with GB's women's curling team to fight it out for a bronze medal after Eve Muirhead's rink were beaten 6-4 by Canada in their semi-final.

Canada had capitalised on several GB errors to take a 3-0 lead after two ends, but Muirhead and Co pegged back the lead to ensure an exciting finish. Muirhead made a superb double take out with her final stone, but it was not to be.

Canada's Jennifer Jones had to endure the tension of a crucial last stone, but she delivered it perfectly to clinch victory and a place in the final.

Muirhead and her team now face Switzerland on Thursday for bronze, while Canada and Sweden will battle it out for gold following Sweden's 7-5 victory over the Swiss in the second semi-final.

"I'm gutted and so are all the girls," Muirhead told BBC Sport. "I came into this tournament saying I wanted no regrets and we gave everything we could in that game.

"I'm proud of the girls and we've still got a chance of a medal. I don't want to come away without a medal around my neck. Our backs were against the wall but we gave it back to them and it was a high quality game. We've trained hard for this and we'll give the next match our all."

Elsewhere, GB's Paula Walker and Rebekah Wilson were 12th in the women's bobsleigh. Canada's Kaillie Humphries and Heather Moyse defended their Olympic title by pipping the USA's Elena Meyers and Lauryn Williams by 0.10 seconds. The USA's Jamie Greubel and Aja Evans took bronze.

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