Wheelchair curling team in double paralympic victory
Estonia's wheelchair curling team took their first ever winter paralympic victories in Beijing on Monday, beating Latvia and Norway and making up for the two losses the team had suffered the day before.
The all-Baltic States encounter with Latvia ended up being very closely-fought, with Estonia winning 6:5. The Norway encounter saw the Estonian team prevail 8:3.
Andrei Koitmäe, captain of the Estonian side, said: "The start of the game went very nicely, but the end was very, very difficult. We got more luck towards the end, otherwise it was a very even match."
The victory, the first for the Estonian team in the winter paralympics, followed a Latvian comeback at 5:4, after a strong Estonian start. Lauri Murašov finally clinched the victory, at 6:5.
Conversely, the Norway encounter started badly for Estonia, who found themselves 2:0 down early one, only to pull eight points in-a-row in the next games and drop just one more point, to take the match 8:3.
This was the first victory for the team over Norway, Koitmäe noted.
The two victories followed a 9:6 loss to the U.S. and a 9:3 defeat by host country China.
Estonia's mixed team consists of Murašov, Kätlin Riidebach, Signe Falkenberg, Mait Mätas plus Koitmäe as captain.
Head coach is Canadian Chris Bowden; Ain Villau is his assistant.
Estonia now lies in fifth place in the table after seven rounds, and the team faces Great Britain and Sweden, on Tuesday.
The 2022 Beijing Winter Paralympics run March 4-13.
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Editor: Andrew Whyte