CURLING Preview: World Mixed Curling Champs start in Canada

Held for the first time outside of Europe, the World Mixed Curling Championships start on Saturday on Kelowna, British Columbia (CAN), with 35 teams entered.

This is an open-entry event (no qualification) for four-person teams with two men and two women. There are four pools, with the winner to advance to the quarterfinals and the second- and third-place teams in play-in games to reach the quarters:

Group A: Belarus, England, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Kazakhstan, Scotland, Turkey and Wales.

Group B: Australia, Brazil, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Netherlands, Russia, Switzerland and United States.

Group C: Croatia, Czech Republic, Spain, Estonia, France, Latvia, Poland, Sweden and Chinese Taipei.

Group D: Austria, Canada, Hungary, Japan, Norway, New Zealand, Slovenia and Slovakia.

Round-robin play in each group will continue through the 18th, with the playoffs on the 19th and 20th.

The U.S. team has Evan Workin (Skip), Rachel Workin (Vice-skip), Jordan Brown and Christina Lammers.

This is the fourth edition of the event, with Scotland as defending champions, defeating Canada, 8-5, to win last year, with the Czech Republic third. Russia and Sweden went 1-2 in 2016 and Norway won the inaugural tournament, 5-3, over Sweden in 2015.

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