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Race to PyeongChang wide open as Denmark upset China

Race to PyeongChang wide open as Denmark upset China
By Sportsbeat

06/12/2017 at 23:51Updated 07/12/2017 at 07:28

Denmark have thrown the curling Olympic Qualification Event wide open after inflicting China's first defeat of the competition in Pilsen, Czech Republic.

Their tense 5-3 victory means every team has now won and lost at least once in the competition, with each nation's bid for PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games qualification set to go down to the wire.

That was despite China taking a 3-2 lead after a double take-out in the third end, only for Danish skip Rasmus Stjerne to draw one point in the sixth end to level the score at 3-3.

From there, they upped the ante to take the last two points of the match to win 5-3, with the skip delighted that the game-plan came to the ice in what could be the biggest match of their competition.

"That is a big one. China were the front runners," he said.

"If we forfeited this one we would have been in the bottom, but right now we keep it close. Every win is important. [It took] a really good team effort to win this game.

"They weren't sharp and we took advantage of that."

Video - Sports Explainer: The art of curling

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Denmark and China currently sit top of the round-robin stage, with two teams set to qualify for PyeongChang from this competition.

Up there with them are Germany and Italy, also boasting two wins from three, with the former getting the better of the hosts, Czech Republic.

They had to do it the hard way too, coming from 3-1 down at the end of three ends, to wrestle the advantage, taking five points in three ends to go 6-3 ahead.

The seventh end saw the hosts pull one point back, only for a two-point ninth end to end the contest and secure a second win of the competition for Germany.

Meanwhile, Italy's second win came from a 6-5 win over Russia, coming from behind with just one to play with two points in the final end.

The other game in the session saw Netherlands pick up their first win of the event – becoming the final team to do so – with an 8-4 win over Finland.

Sportsbeat 2017

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