'Shot from the heavens' keeps GB curling medal hopes alive
David Murdoch's final stone in Olympic clash with Norway could go down in curling history
IT MIGHT not have generated the same levels of hysteria in the BBC commentary box as Jenny Jones's bronze medal last week, but Team GB men's curling captain David Murdoch produced the "shot of the tournament" to propel his team into the semi-finals of the competition in Sochi.
With the British team trailing by one point before the final stone - aka the hammer - of the final end of the match, Murdoch "captured a shot from the heavens", according to The Times.
Instead of sending down a safe shot to the centre of the house to earn a draw and force a shoot-out, in which Norway would have had the advantage of the last stone, Murdoch instead opted for a far riskier effort that involved taking out two Norwegian stones to earn Britain two points and an outright victory.
The shot came off perfectly, scattering the Norwegian stones and sending Britain into the semi-finals. "It is going to rank up there with the best shots I have ever played," said Murdoch afterwards. "To stay in the Olympics or be out of the Olympics in one shot."
"It leaves Murdoch with a chance to make up for near misses at the last two Olympic tournaments he lost the bronze-medal game in 2006 and a tiebreaker for the semi-finals in 2010 when Britain were the world champions," reports The Guardian, which notes that despite the fact Britain is one of curling's "hotbeds" the men's team have not won a medal since the sport returned to the Olympics in 1998.
"Murdoch's final throw... will go down in curling history should GB go on to win a medal," adds The Independent.
The GB men's team now joins the women's team in the semi-finals of the competition.
- There was disappointment, however, for ski halfpipe competitor Rowan Cheshire who was forced to pull out of her event after a being hospitalised after a bad crash in training.