The seniors seemed to take their time to wake up but scored forty-two imps in the second half against Turkey on their way to a 23-7 VP win. It was a very wild set of boards and they were on the right side of most of them. Then, apparently taking their siesta, they lost heavily to Italy. In their final match of the day I commented on John and Iain as they played a solid game against the Israelis: a tight match finished with an eight imps win for 17-13 VP. The team now lie seventh, only 6 VPs behind third at the halfway point.
Sweden, Wales and Denmark will provide another long day tomorrow. They will feel that this is a competitive day and a chance to shine.
The women did not cope with the wild first set as well as the seniors and had a winning draw against Spain. Then they lost heavily to a rapidly improving Italian team - it seems that Italy started poorly when their first four matches were against the Dutch, English, French and Swedish and have been zooming up the table ever since.
So the first poor day for the women but they have tomorrow off to recover. I predict they will be (i) in the gym/sauna (ii) lounging at the pool or (iii) shopping for shoes, but perhaps (iv) "all of the above" is closer to the mark.
Finally, the open team have finished. A good second half against Belgium earned them a 16-14 VP win but then, as I predicted, they found it difficult to score against Germany. Indeed, they were unable to double the five imps earned on the first board until the final board, going down by 23-7 VP.
The open team finished bottom of their group with just two wins from sixteen matches. Clearly a disappointing performance but the Europeans is a tough event and the scoreboard does tell the story. At such a time it is easy for the 'stay at home' experts and 'anonymous' to criticise the performance, but if you are so much better than our team, why are you not beating them in the trials?
My thoughts on their performance tomorrow.
Meanwhile Wales again suffered disappointment in the open qualification, failing to beat Switzerland in the final match. They started very well but their failure to beat any of the bottom three teams proved decisive. England finished second in this group and will be looking forward to the second round-robin.