Kyle Smith's Scotland in final after thrilling win over Switzerland

Scotland's men will face Sweden in tomorrow's final of the Le Gruyere AOP European Curling Championships, in St Gallen, Switzerland, following their 9-8 semi-final victory over the Swiss yesterday evening.
Team Scotland skip Kyle Smith.
 Picture: John DevlinTeam Scotland skip Kyle Smith.
 Picture: John Devlin
Team Scotland skip Kyle Smith. Picture: John Devlin

To reach the semi-final, the Scots earlier concluded their round-robin programme with a 5-2 triumph in a must-win game against the Netherlands.

The Scots started strongly in the semi-final with a steal of three in the second end when Switzerland’s fourth player Benoit Schwarz failed to get inside three well-placed Scottish stones.

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However, the Scots gave up three shots in the fifth end to put the teams into the half-time break level at 5-5.

The teams swapped scores of two shots in the next two ends and, in the eighth, the Scots gave up a steal of one when skip Kyle Smith’s attempted double clear-out jammed on a back stone. The Scots blanked the ninth end to keep last stone for the tenth. Schwarz then missed a double take-out attempt, leaving Smith with a pressure draw-shot into the house for two shots and the win.

In the other semi-final, defending champions 
Sweden beat Norway 8-3.

Smith said: “We’re absolutely delighted. We got that early start and stole three which was huge but we knew they were always going to come back. We put them under a bit of pressure in the last end there and thankfully they didn’t make it.”

Earlier, Eve Muirhead’s Scottish women had concluded their round-robin programme with a 9-3 win over Hungary that consolidated their third position.

They now face hosts 
Switzerland in this morning’s semi-final, with Sweden playing Italy in the other.