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Gushue to miss eighth straight World Curling Tour event

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A critical 2016-17 curling season has not started out as Brad Gushue had hoped. And that’s putting it mildly.

With St. John’s set to play host to the Tim Hortons Brier in March, and the Olympic Curling Trials set for Dec., 2017, Gushue has yet to throw a curling stone in a game this fall.

Now comes word, through a Curling Canada news release, that Gushue is out for the Canada Cup next week in Brandon, Man., because of a nagging hip/groin injury.

Gushue has missed seven World Curling Tour events this season, but the team — which also includes Mark Nichols, Brett Gallant and Geoff Walker — sits on top spot in the Canadian Team Ranking system.

“The great thing is that the team has been doing so well without me,” Gushue said. “Mark is one of the world’s best players, and he’s been showing that this season.”

Two-time world junior champ Charley Thomas will fill in for Gushue at the Canada Cup. Thomas, subbing for Gushue for a fourth time, will throw third stone while Nichols tosses last rocks.

 “I’m definitely making progress,” said Gushue, “and I want to keep doing my physio to make sure that I’m back to 100 per cent in time for the Brier playdowns.

“Charley played extremely well at the Grand Slam event in Okotoks (Alta.), and I’m sure they won’t miss a beat in Brandon.”

The top seven Canadian men’s and women’s teams will be in Brandon. At stake for the winners will be berths in the 2017 Trials in Ottawa — the event that will decide Canada’s four-player teams for the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea — as well as a berth in January’s Continental Cup in Las Vegas.

With St. John’s set to play host to the Tim Hortons Brier in March, and the Olympic Curling Trials set for Dec., 2017, Gushue has yet to throw a curling stone in a game this fall.

Now comes word, through a Curling Canada news release, that Gushue is out for the Canada Cup next week in Brandon, Man., because of a nagging hip/groin injury.

Gushue has missed seven World Curling Tour events this season, but the team — which also includes Mark Nichols, Brett Gallant and Geoff Walker — sits on top spot in the Canadian Team Ranking system.

“The great thing is that the team has been doing so well without me,” Gushue said. “Mark is one of the world’s best players, and he’s been showing that this season.”

Two-time world junior champ Charley Thomas will fill in for Gushue at the Canada Cup. Thomas, subbing for Gushue for a fourth time, will throw third stone while Nichols tosses last rocks.

 “I’m definitely making progress,” said Gushue, “and I want to keep doing my physio to make sure that I’m back to 100 per cent in time for the Brier playdowns.

“Charley played extremely well at the Grand Slam event in Okotoks (Alta.), and I’m sure they won’t miss a beat in Brandon.”

The top seven Canadian men’s and women’s teams will be in Brandon. At stake for the winners will be berths in the 2017 Trials in Ottawa — the event that will decide Canada’s four-player teams for the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea — as well as a berth in January’s Continental Cup in Las Vegas.

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