Bruce Mouat hopes Scotland’s best is yet to come after he and Jen Dodds defeated Canada tot set up a World Championship gold medal match for the second time in successive months in Aberdeen.
It was the second time in the event that the two nations that are most closely associated with the sport had met and just as they had in the round-robin stages, Dodds and Mouat proved too strong for the highly regarded pairing of Kerri Einarson, skip of the current Canadian women’s champions and 2006 Winter Olympic gold medallist Brad Gushue as they ran out 7-4 winners.
While Mouat gained considerable confidence for last month’s defeat in the World Men’s Doubles final to Sweden with unprecedented back to back Grand Slam victories on the following two weekends, he said that beating Norway in today’s final would be the perfect way to make up for that loss.
“Let’s go one better this time,” he beamed.
“I would love to win a gold after this season. This is hands down the best season of my life. It’s been bizarre for everyone, but really satisfying at the same time. Just to be able to curl and to compete at a World Championship is a blessing.
“I’m absolutely buzzing to be curling and to be in a world final again is really exciting. So, to cap it off with a win and to claim a gold medal at a World Championship would be the best way for this season to finish.”
While the Scots claimed the upper hand with a slightly fortuitous count of three at the third end, at which Mouat acknowledged that neither team had produced their best, his perfectly executed run back at the sixth to deny the Canadians any chance of a big end proved crucial.
“It was a big shot and to be honest the whole game I seemed to be hitting it an inch high, but that was exactly what I needed to do with that, so I just felt I was going to make it from the hack already,” he explained.
“It’s good to make a shot like that in a semi-final and if that was a shot to get us to a final then I’m really happy it came off.”
Dodds was once again statistically the best player on the ice and while she remained self-critical as she assessed their performance, she was thrilled to be in a final at her first World Mixed Doubles Championship.
“I’m so excited,” she said.
“That was a great game. Probably not one of our best performances, but it was enough to win, so that’s the main thing.”
She reckoned the key had been the way they maintained their concentration as they played the scoreboard in taking advantage of surging into that 4-1 lead at the third end.
“You need to keep your composure after you draw that three, but we knew they were going to come back fighting,” said Dodds.
“In mixed doubles, even if you’re four up it’s so easy to get points back, so it was just about concentrating end by end and making sure we forced them to one or just two in the Powerplay was ok for us, keeping their points to a minimum.”
While fully respectful of a powerful Norwegian pairing that has, like the Scots, lost just one match all week and defeated previously unbeaten Sweden in their semi-final, she said their focus would now be on maintaining the form that has taken them to the final.
“What we’ve been saying all week is to just keep doing the exact same, keep doing what we’re doing, play our game,” she said.
“The Norwegians are a really good mixed doubles team. They beat Sweden, so we’ll need another good performance in the final.”
The final takes place at 3pm, while the bronze medal match between Sweden and Canada takes place at 10.00am.