Despite being a man short, Sweden’s Niklas Edin rink completed an unbeaten run to the IG Wealth Management Western Showdown championship with a 6-3 win over Calgary’s Kevin Koe in yesterday’s final at the Swift Current Curling Club.
"We tried to keep the lead as long as we could and we got a few lucky breaks in the fourth end when we stole two," said skip Oscar Eriksson. "Being up three is huge in any curling game, and we know, playing those guys, they're so good in the offensive game, playing aggressive and trying to score big points, and we tried to limit the score for them and keep the hammer for as long as we could."
Edin, a five-time world champion and the defending Olympic gold medallist, was sidelined after tearing his meniscus at last weekend's Grand Slam event in Grande Prairie, Alberta, and had to return to Sweden to undergo surgery. Eriksson took over as skip for the three-man team and won every game in the triple-knockout event and the playoffs.
"We could have lost the first game or the third game, or the semi-final, too, but we played good enough and got the breaks when we needed them," he added. "It will be nice to have a few days to rest before the next one... Hopefully Niklas can get back sooner rather than later."
The Edin rink received the $12,000 top prize in this second annual men's Western Showdown event. Koe won the inaugural event in 2021.
Two weeks ago, the Swift Current Curling Club hosted a women's Western Showdown event for the first time that was won by Switzerland's Silvana Tirinzoni.