SCOTLAND’S curlers have been on quite a run of form in recent years.

Olympic, World and European silverware has returned to these shores on a regular basis over the past few seasons and Cameron Bryce is determined to ensure he and his team’s names are added to the list of Scottish major championship medallists by the end of this week.

Today in Aberdeen, the World Mixed Curling Championships begin and Bryce is desperate to continue his country’s success on the global stage.

His team, which consists of two men and two women, also includes Lisa Davie, Scott Hyslop and Robyn Munro, are the current Scottish champions and Bryce is quick to admit he heads to Aberdeen with the intention of fighting for medals come the sharp end of the tournament.

Mixed curling is played in an identical format to the single sex game but there is, says Bryce, subtle differences in the mixed format.

However, he is confident his rink has gelled in a way that will ensure their best form will be on show in Aberdeen.

“There’s a different dynamic in a mixed team – sometimes, the men can be a bit more straight to the point but the relationship we’ve all got with each other, it’s very natural and we’re all close on a friendship basis so we can speak to each other. And we all really buy into what we’re trying to do,” he says.

“We try to play to everybody’s strengths and being able to adapt strategies to fit your situation is important too and I think we’re able to do that.

“I like playing aggressive curling and I think that’s how we play in this mixed team too – I’ve been curling for 17 years and you learn the hard way that if you don’t go for it, you don’t get the results you want.

“When you come up against these very good teams, you can’t afford to not take your chances.”

At 27 years old, Bryce is the most experienced member of the team and the Kelso native knows exactly what it takes to win silverware at this event.

In 2016, he was part of the rink which also included Olympic medallist, Bobbie Lammie, which won bronze and that was, he believes, the ideal platform to catapult him onto the international curling scene.

In the men’s game, he is currently top-30 in the world and admits he goes into this week’s World Championships in a markedly different frame of mind to that of his last appearance at this tournament six years ago.

As one of the favourites for success this week though, he is, well aware of the danger of complacency in the early rounds.

“When we won bronze in 2016, we were a very competent team but we didn’t expect to get a medal,” he says.

“Now though, I don’t like going into a competition without the expectation of winning a medal, that’s the mindset that’s come from playing at a high level for quite some time.

“We’ll take this competition in stages; we’ll focus on getting through to the knock-out stages and then take it from there to the point that we’ll hopefully be playing for a medal.

“I don’t want to sound too confident but hopefully we can reach the last four and then anything can happen.

“There’s some really good teams here but I don’t fear anybody and I don’t think the rest of the team do either.

“I’ve got a lot of respect for a lot of the curlers who are here but they’ll have respect for us too – Scotland’s obviously one of the top curling nations in the world at the moment and so no one will underestimate us. That makes it tough too because we know the lower ranked teams will step their game up against us so we can’t take anything for granted.”

Scotland open their campaign against Hungary today and Bryce is hopeful the home support will be vociferous.

The World Mixed Championships may not be held in quite the regard of the Olympic Games by curling aficionados but Bryce is unperturbed by any of that and knows if he is able to call himself world champion by next weekend, this will be one of the most unforgettable weeks of his life.

“It’ll be brilliant to experience having home support and the longer we stay in the competition, the more people will likely come along so by the end of the week, hopefully that’ll work in our favour,” he says.

“It’s always nice winning and Scotland have such a great record in recent years globally so we’d like to keep that going.

“And you can never take a World Championship for granted because you don’t know when it’s going to be your last one.

“Winning this event might not get us a load more funding but it’s definitely going to be one that we’ll talk about in years to come, especially if we can manage to win it.”


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