Belfast Telegraph

Monday 1 September 2014

Winter Olympics in Sochi: Curlers fly flag for Team GB as starlet Katie ends up in tears

Teen spirit: Katie Summerhayes after freestyle skiing slopestyle

A day of British tears and anger was rescued by the curlers with David Murdoch's men snatching a dramatic final-end victory over Germany and Eve Muirhead's rink crushing the Americans in an emphatic return to form.

It put the curlers back on track after both rinks lost on the opening day of competition, but there will be no opportunity for Katie Summerhayes to salvage something from her Olympic debut.

The 18-year-old freestyle skier from Sheffield raised hopes of a second British medal when she qualified third for the final of the slopestyle event.

Summerhayes recovered from a career-threatening knee injury which required two operations, the last only nine months ago, to rush back to fitness and make the Games.

This was only her third event of the season but a World Cup silver in her second had demonstrated her potential and she produced her best run since the injury to reach the final here. That proved the high point.

She fell on her first run and then two minor mistakes, touching the ground with her hands after two of her three jumps, left her seventh and in tears.

"I'm gutted, I'm really gutted," she said after scoring 70.60 in her second run. Her two qualifying runs were worth 81.40 and 84.

The gold went to Dara Howell of Canada, who produced a stunning run of jumps and tricks to score 94.20.

Her compatriot Yuki Tsubota suffered a suspected fractured jaw after falling in the final.

Meanwhile, Muirhead led her rink to a timely win over the United States and set an Olympic record in the process.

On the fourth end Britain won seven points – the most for one end in Olympic history – and it was all over after six ends as the Americans conceded, Britain 12-3 ahead.

"We are obviously pretty pumped up after winning," said Murdoch.

"We can't have a lackadaisical start. We need to come out firing a lot quicker."

The angriest man in Sochi yesterday may well have been Andrew Musgrave.

The Scot was furious after being eliminated in the cross-country sprint. It is the best performance by a Briton in cross-country skiing.

"I skied terribly," said Musgrave, who lives in Norway.

"On a good day I should be able to beat anyone in the world on a course like this, but today I just didn't have it. I had a crap day. It just sucks."

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