Chinese Women’s Curling team at Vancouver Olympics

What a big difference two years has made to the Chinese team! The Canadian team won two years ago and I wrote at the time,

“I agree with Kent Gilchrist that we should “welcome global growth of curling, not fear it“. I think it is too narrow-minded to stop teaching other countries and helping them to be better players.”

Now the Chinese Women’s Curling team lead by Bingyu Wang (skip) is kicking many team’s asses at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics including, unfortunately, the Canadian team.

OK, it is painful to see our beloved Canadian team being beaten, but for the betterment of the sport, it is important to see other teams get better too.

Go Canada Go !!!

***

Feb 23, 2010 Update: Watch the Russia vs China (7-4) game online. End 3, first big mistake that compounded.

For the record (Via WaPo, emphasis added) “Furious Chinese coach ready to walk away” By JANIE McCAULEY
The Associated Press
Tuesday, February 23, 2010; 12:56 AM

VANCOUVER, British Columbia — Canadian-bred Chinese curling coach Dan Rafael is so furious with what he calls a lack of passion by his players he said he plans to quit coaching this group once his contract is up. [Kempton: If this is Dan’s way to motivate his team, it might have worked. Will see.]

Rafael watched the reigning world champions lose 7-4 in a shortened nine-end match to Russia on Monday.

His hands trembling because he was so angry, Rafael suggested the team should be broken up after about seven years together.

“They have no passion for the game. It’s their job. They just take everything for granted,” Rafael said. “We didn’t show up. You just have to look at the stats to know. We beat Canada, and we don’t show up. They looked pretty amused. They think it’s funny for whatever reason – you’re at the Olympics. I’m furious.” [Kempton: A passionate coach may be what the Chinese team need to win gold. Yikes, I hope they don’t but I still believe, “may the best team win”.]

Rafael’s remarks were news to the secretary general of the Chinese curling federation, Li Dongyan.

When approached by The Associated Press during China’s men’s match against the U.S., Li said he hadn’t heard about what Rafael said. Rafael was sitting 10 feet away from Li during the game.

“I don’t know. That’s not a question I can answer,” Li said when asked about Rafael’s future as China’s coach. “We don’t discuss it.”

Chinese skip Wang Bingyu also said she was upset about how her team performed on the heels of a huge win against Canada on Saturday that sent skip Cheryl Bernard’s favored foursome to its first Olympic loss. The Chinese are 5-3 heading into their final match of round-robin play Tuesday against the United States.

“Of course us, too, are so, so angry with this game,” Wang said.

Rafael was headed to a team meeting to discuss what went wrong.

“We’ve got to come out and play better than that last game,” he said. “Everybody is catching up to us now.”

Rafael also referenced speculation that some players might walk away from curling after the Olympics.

The Chinese team is made up of a former hockey player and three ex-speed skaters from Harbin. Wang, who goes by Betty, disagreed with her coach’s take that she and her teammates don’t care.

“Of course we love curling,” she said. “Not many people know what’s curling. We don’t have a club, and we keep playing.”

This isn’t the first time Rafael has spoken out during the Vancouver Games. Before competition began he disagreed with China’s decision not to make curlers available until after their first game.

Despite his comments, Rafael said he thinks the curling federation there will keep him through June 30 when his contract is up. Then, he said, he will likely look for coaching work elsewhere.

“What do you do? I’ll keep coaching to June 30, 2010,” he said. “It’s their decision. It’s their option. I don’t see why they would get rid of me. I’ve proven what I can do.”

3 Responses to Chinese Women’s Curling team at Vancouver Olympics

  1. hevangel says:

    I watched that game, it’s so exciting. I never thought curling can be this exciting to watch.

    But somehow China lose to Russian, one of the weaker team, yesterday. Weird. I guess the problem of the Chinese team is they are not consistence.

  2. kempton says:

    Yeah, curling can be exciting to watch especially the rules are understood and the viewers have a chance to play a game or two to appreciate the challenges.

    Really, the Chinese women lost to the Russian team? May be they weren’t paying enough attention.

    Watching an exciting LIVE China vs USA game
    http://www.ctvolympics.ca/curling/results-and-schedules/match=CUW400943/index.html

    5-5 after 9 ends. Both teams are playing well.

  3. […] excited to read the CBC report, “Canada’s Bernard secures curling top spot“. As I wrote previously, lets not underestimate the Chinese women […]

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