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Sweden beat GB in men’s curling final

Great Britain’s Beijing Olympics gold medal drought continues after they lost the men’s curling final 5-4 to Sweden in an extra end.

Forced to try an ambitious effort to salvage an improbable win against the hammer, Bruce Mouat’s attempted take-out missed by inches to give Swedish skip Niklas Edin his first Olympic crown.

Mouat’s men were never in front after losing two in the second end, but the 27-year-old and his team of Hammy McMillan, Bobby Lammie, Grant Hardie and alternate Ross Whyte are the first British medallists at the Beijing Games.

Great Britain will also play Japan on Sunday in the women’s curling final.

Edin, a former soldier in the Swedish army and a five-time world champion, was under pressure in Beijing to land the one major title that still eluded him.

After winning at the 2018 Olympics and bronze in 2014, the four-time Olympian combined with Oskar Eriksson, Rasmus Wrana and Christoffer Sundgren for the gold medal.

Eriksson, who won the bronze in mixed doubles, is the first person ever to win two curling medals at one Olympics. He also beat Mouat in the mixed doubles third-place game.

Sweden took the initiative when Edin took two in the second end, and under his expert stewardship, it was one they would never quite relinquish.

The Swedes extended their advantage by stealing one in the third despite a brilliant double take-out by Mouat that gave him a glimmer of hope.

Mouat pulled one back in the fourth for 3-2 and after Edin intentionally blanked the sixth and seventh ends to retain the last-stone advantage, he made a rare error in the eighth to hand the British a steal and allow them to tie up the score at 3-3.

More clever tactics by Mouat in the eighth forced Edin to settle for one, and a pair of superb double take-outs in the ninth – first by Lammie, then Hardie – set up an intentional blank to allow GB to retain the hammer for the final end.

But forced to take one in the 10th after some more expert work from Edin, they gave the advantage back to the Swedes for the extra end, and they forced Mouat into attempting an improbable effort which came up short.

On Friday, Canada beat the United States for the men’s bronze medal.

– with AP

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