Bruce Mouat and Jen Dodds were thrilled to fire Scotland to glory in the World Mixed Doubles in Aberdeen.
A 9-7 win over the Norwegian pairing of Kristin Skaslien and Magnus Nedregotten in a tense and hard-fought final saw the match decided on a measure, with Scotland ensuring that the nation’s first World Mixed Doubles Championship medal of any colour would be gold, by the narrowest of margins.
“That was such a tough game,” said a delighted but relieved Mouat, who had claimed bronze with his men’s team at their 2018 World Championships, then silver at that event last month.
“We were maybe scrappy for a wee while, but mixed doubles is a game that you can stay in even if you’re down a few. We both felt like we could win it and that’s exactly what happened.”
Having played key roles in qualifying Team GB for both the men’s and mixed doubles disciplines at next year’s Winter Olympics in Beijing, Scotland’s first victory at World Championship in an Olympic discipline for eight years confirmed that the 26-year-old has fully established himself as a major force in the sport.
This victory at Curl Aberdeen means Mouat has won every men’s and mixed doubles tournament he has contested on Scottish ice since the beginning of 2020, while the only event he has failed to win this season, in a run that has included victories in two Grand Slams in Canada, was the World Men’s Championship.
“This has just been an incredible season,” said Mouat.
“It’s the most bizarre season we’ve ever had, but we’ve built something pretty good out of it and I’ve had a lot of success the last two months and I can’t thank enough all the parties who have put in so much time and effort into making sure we can curl, from British Curling to UK Sport to the Scottish Institute of Sport to all the coaches and all the players as well.”
Dodds was back in competition in Aberdeen less than a week after returning from Canada, where she had been competing in the World Women’s Championship as part of Team Muirhead.
She shook off the disappointment of their failure to reach the play-offs and any jet-lag to perform superbly all week at her first World Mixed Doubles Championship.
“I’m just in shock just now,” she said.
“I can’t believe it. We knew that was going to be a really close final. They’re a really great team, so we knew it would go down to the wire.
“Early on I didn’t have my best game, so we just hung on in there and then at the seventh end taking three in our Powerplay was massive.
“It was almost a wee bit of a momentum swing for the eighth end and Bruce just set up the angles great at the last end and I just had to put a guard up. She was so close to making that last shot, but luckily it was us that came out winning.”
The week had begun with the Scots in no doubt that their first priority was to secure that Winter Olympic spot for Team GB and they will now switch focus to trying to ensure that they will be the pair chosen to make that trip.
“Hopefully Beijing is a goal for us,” said Dodds.
“Obviously, it will come down to selectors. This doesn’t guarantee our spot, but it puts us in a really strong position for it.
“We’ve just had a great week together, just enjoyed it so much and had fun. We don’t get sick of each other, or at least I don’t get sick of Bruce. It’s so much fun playing with him and we’ve just had a really good week.”
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Mouat added: “Winning this in Scotland was something I’ll remember for a long time.
“It’s just a shame that we didn’t have friends and family here, because we just obviously miss them and we’ll have a celebration with them at some point. It would have been really nice, but a World Championship in Scotland is still so special.”