Eve Muirhead, who brought Olympic curling gold home to Scotland, retires

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Scotland’s Eve Muirhead announced her retirement, six months after skipping Great Britain to its first Olympic curling title in 20 years.

“I have made the hardest decision of my life to hang up my curling shoes and retire.” the 32-year-old Muirhead posted on social media last Thursday. “Retiring from curling as a current European, World and Olympic champion is something I always dreamt of, and I am signing off with a huge smile on my face.”

Muirhead, was a prodigy from the home of curling, winning her first of four world junior titles at age 16. At 19, she was the youngest skip at the Vancouver Olympics, where her rink placed seventh.

She earned her first senior world medal a month later (silver), her first senior world title in 2013 and in 2014 became the youngest skip to win an Olympic medal (bronze). She capped her career with gold in the Olympic women’s tournament in Beijing and a world title in mixed doubles in April.

Muirhead started curling at age 9, tagging along with her father, Gordon, an Olympic curler in 1992 when it was a demonstration sport. Muirhead’s brothers, Glen and Thomas, also competed in Olympic curling in 2018.

Muirhead declined scholarship offers to play college golf in the U.S. to pursue curling. She is also a world-class bagpiper, according to the Scottish curling federation.

At age 11, she stayed up late to watch Rhona Martin’s rink win Great Britain’s first Olympic women’s curling title in 2002. Martin’s last stone to win gold was named the “Stone of Destiny” and put on display at the National Museum Of Scotland.

NBC Olympic research contributed to this report.

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Thomas Ulsrud, Norway Olympic curling skip, dies after cancer battle

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Thomas Ulsrud, the skip of Norway’s 2010 Olympic silver-medal-winning curling team whose flashy pants were a sensation, died Tuesday at age 50 after an 18-month cancer battle, according to his former team and confirmed by Norway’s curling federation.

“Thomas has been fighting cancer since December 2020, but the last week it took a turn for the worse and in the end he was gone very quickly,” was posted on the social media of Team Ulsrud, which disbanded in 2019. “We the team are devastated for our loss.”

In 2010, Team Ulsrud became celebrities at the Vancouver Olympics on their way to winning silver medals. Their checkered pants were among the most memorable images of the Games.

From NBC Olympic research:

Shortly before the Vancouver Olympics, the Norway Olympic Committee outfitted Ulsrud’s team with dull, all black uniforms. Team member Christoffer Svae differed and bought several pairs of argyle pants with Norwegian colors of red, blue and white.

The night before their first game, the Norwegians sat together in a room in the Olympic Village, contemplating whether wearing the pants was a good idea. They found fellow Norwegian skiers and snowboarders across the hall and asked the women for their opinion. They told the men they thought they were cool, so Svae said, “Boys, the young girls dig this. We’re doing this.”

As soon as the Norwegians took the ice for their first game, the pants were an immediate sensation. A Facebook fan page gained nearly half a million followers. They ended up signing a lucrative sponsorship deal with Loudmouth Golf, John Daly‘s outfitter.

Ulsrud later called it “the best decision we’ve ever made” as a team.

“I think that’s the closest I’ve been to feeling like a pop star,” Ulsrud said afterward, specifically mentioning walking in downtown Vancouver one night, according to NBC Olympic research. “People had had a couple of drinks, and a couple girls asked me to marry them. I signed something like 200 autographs and pictures. I had the whole gig going. That was my five minutes of fame right there.”

Ulsrud skipped Norway again at the Olympics in 2014 and 2018, again with unique pants. He also led Norway to a world title in 2014.

How to watch Women’s Curling gold medal game: GB vs. Japan Live stream, TV time, 2022 Beijing Olympics

Curling - Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics Day 14
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The women’s curling tournament at the 2022 Winter Olympics wraps up on Saturday night with Japan taking on Great Britain for gold. These teams matched up in the round-robin sessions, with Great Britain coming out on top 10-4 in just 8 ends. Check out the full women’s curling standings and men’s curling standings to see how the 2022 Olympics events have gone so far.

Japan Women’s Curling

Japan’s women’s curling team took home bronze at the 2018 Winter Olympics, and this year they are guaranteed a better result by making it to the gold medal game. Japan will be playing for its first Olympic curling gold medal.

Great Britain Women’s Curling

Great Britain’s women’s team is coming off the highest-scoring game of this Olympics so far in their semifinals matchup against Sweden. Great Britain pulled it out in the 11th end for a 12-11 victory. Great Britain won the women’s curling gold in 2002 and the bronze in 2014. The Great Britain men’s team won silver here in Beijing, losing to Sweden 5-4 – that was the first medal for GBR at these Games.

 

What time is the Women’s Curling gold medal game?

The gold medal women’s curling game will be on Sunday morning at 9:05 a.m. in Beijing, which is Saturday 02/19/2022 at 8:05 p.m. ET in the United States.

 

RELATED: 2022 Winter Olympics Medal Count

How to stream the Women’s Curling Gold Medal Match on Peacock:

Peacock has been the streaming home for all of the Beijing Winter Games, offering live stream coverage of every single event–including the big women’s curling match between Great Britain and Japan.

How to watch JPN vs. GBR live on TV, stream online

The gold medal men’s curling match will be on Saturday night at 8:05 a.m., EST on NBC. You can watch the event live on TV, or stream the whole event on NBCOlympics.com by clicking the link below.

 

Check out the full team rosters for both countries below:

Great Britain Women’s Curling Roster

Athletes:

  • Eve Muirhead
  • Vicky Wright
  • Jennifer Dodds
  • Hailey Duff
  • Mili Smith

Team Officials:

  • Kristian Lindstrom (Coach)
  • David Murdoch (National Coach)
  • Kenny More (Team Official)

RELATED: Full Winter Olympics 2022 Curling schedule

Japan Women’s Curling Roster

Athletes:

  • Satsuki Fujisawa
  • Chinami Yoshida
  • Yumi Suzuki
  • Yurika Yoshida
  • Kotomi Ishizaki

Team Officials:

  • J.D. Lind (Coach)
  • Ryoji Onodera (Coach)
  • Hitoshi Yanagi (Team Leader)

RELATED: Everything you need to know about the 2022 Winter Olympics

Women’s Curling Bronze Medal Game

Sweden will face Switzerland in the bronze medal game on Saturday, February 19 at 7:05 a.m. ET on NBC. The bronze medal women’s curling game will be available to stream on NBC Olympics and Peacock.

 

Curling Documentary on Peacock

After the 2022 Olympic curling action finishes, be sure to check Peacock to satisfy your curling needs.  The curling documentary “American Rock Stars” follows the U.S. men’s curling team’s quest to repeat gold.

 

 

Be sure to follow OlympicTalk and NBC Olympics for the latest news and updates about the Beijing Winter Games!