Howie praises curling success

Hampshire Chronicle: Rhona Howie described Great Britain women's curling team's bronze medal win as a 'great achievement' Rhona Howie described Great Britain women's curling team's bronze medal win as a 'great achievement'

Great Britain's women's curling coach Rhona Howie praised her girls for grabbing Winter Olympic bronze in Sochi on Thursday, then urged the GB men to really make it a Games to remember.

Skip Eve Muirhead's team battled back from the devastation of losing their semi-final to Canada on Wednesday to beat Switzerland and secure the medal that equals GB's best-ever Winter Olympic medal haul of 1924 - four - with David Murdoch's team playing their Canadian counterparts in the final at the Ice Cube Curling Center on Friday.

The 6-5 win over the Swiss was the British women curlers' first Olympic medal since Howie - then Rhona Martin - skipped GB to gold at Salt Lake City in 2002.

"To win a bronze medal is a great achievement," she said.

"They showed character, they played great and it was a well-deserved medal.

"We were all devastated on Wednesday and you have to take time to grieve a loss like that.

"You can't just say 'bin it' and move on. We had to de-brief properly and look at the not-so-nice bits and they came out fighting, showing their character, and it was great to see."

Attention now turns to Murdoch's rink, when they take on Canada in Friday's final looking to win the first medal for GB men in the event since 1924.

The Britons had to beat Norway in a tie-break to get through to the semi-finals, where they beat Sweden with the final shot of the match.

When Howie was asked about what advice she would give to Lockerbie-born Murdoch, she said: "Just to go out and play his game and control what he can control.

"He can't control what the Canadians do, or the crowd, or anybody else. He has to play his game."

Howie, mindful that her rink had to win two tie-breaks in 2002 on their way to gold, laughed when highlighting the similarities between her journey to victory and Murdoch's trail to the last four.

She said: "He came through the play-off and he is playing on the 21st February, which was the day I won. So it is a no-pressure day.

"He is a very relaxed guy. He is great at calling the game and he keeps the rest of his team calm.

"I think they will go out today and do exactly what they have done in every other game, they will keep fighting to the bitter end."

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