Under-pressure Scotland notch up crucial win in quest for Olympics

Perth curler Eve Muirhead and her under-pressure squad scored a crucial 8-5 win over Japan at the final Olympic qualifiers in Leeuwarden, Holland, on Monday night.

Scotland skip Eve Muirhead.
Scotland skip Eve Muirhead.

The recently-crowned European champion and her colleagues Hailey Duff, Jennifer Dodds, Vicky Wright and Mili Smith are aiming to book their place at the Winter Games in Beijing in February, but their campaign was in serious danger of derailing following Sunday's shock defeat to Turkey and Monday morning's 8-4 loss to Eun-Jung Kim's Korean rink.

Monday night’s clash with Satsuki Fujisawa's rink was a repeat of the 2018 Olympic bronze medal play-off, which Japan won, but the Scots gained some measure of revenge as they raced into an early three-shot lead.

They were still ahead going to the seventh end, where a Scottish three opened up a decisive gap and eventually led to a Japanese concession.

Muirhead and company now have two wins from four round-robin games and will seek to improve that record when they play Germany's European bronze medallist Daniela Jentsch on Tuesday.