Based on the poll from last week it seems that the wheelchair curlers throughout Canada are ready to see the winner on Nationals represent Canada at the Worlds and perhaps even the Paralympics.Is this a reality we can do at this time? Are we ready for this yet?
Well, that is a question which on the interim will remain hidden. We need to understand that wheelchair curling is just coming out of the infant stages of development but it does not mean we will be ready to jump right into the standard Canada formats like the Brier or Scotties for how team Canada is decided.The poll showed that 44% of our readers want the winners of Nationals to be Team Canada with only 27% wanting selection however; we have to ask if this is a real representation of all curlers in Canada. Does this reflect a true understanding of what is on the line? We may find out sooner than later. As we gather steam heading in to Worlds in Korea we know who Canada is and what they have been; SOLID performers with track records to prove it. Only small changes occur with the formula which could be determined to be the CCA way of developing a replacement pool of athletes to draw from post 2014. We have to have a little bit of reality set in folks. Will any major changes occur to Team Canada between now and then? Maybe but highly unlikely unless something major happens. Now, come post 2014, I think we will be dealing with a whole new ball game. Fact is that people have lives and as much as we would all like to follow that passion we sometimes need to look in new direction. Both Jim and Darryl are a little older and by 2015 they may just want to do something other than curl. This goes as well for Ina who has a family and Sonja who has the same.
We need to ask this….if a team shows up to nationals like a brand new team from New Brunswick that has some experience in there skip but the rest of the team has only played for no more than a year. And what if this team has the tournament of their lives and wins Nationals does that mean they would even be close to World level? Not likely, let’s be real. Until such time as Canada has been able to develop enough players across each province which allows for HIGHLY competitive games than the winner of Nationals could not represent at Worlds. If for one moment any player at nationals thinks game play is close to that of a world level they need to rethink.So, for now and maybe until post 2014, the NEED vs. the want must take over and Canada needs to select their team versus any other form for determination. This way the future of our sport is protected for the future.
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