Brandon likes to mix it up

JIM BENDER -- Winnipeg Sun

, Last Updated: 8:26 AM ET

Rob Fowler will attempt to carry on what has become a Brandon tradition in recent seasons.

The former champion has been deemed the No. 1 seed for the Manitoba mixed playdowns, which start in Morris tomorrow. A Brandon foursome has won the event the last three years running and Fowler eliminated Terry McNamee, who won the previous two, in the zone playdowns.

Rounding out the top five seeds are: James Kirkness and Mike McEwen, both of Fort Rouge, Assiniboine Memorial's Mark Olson and David Hamblin of Morris.

ROCK ON: That recent outcry about the shocking disintegration of the MCA rocks turned out to be much adieu about very little. Those rocks, which were employed at the Brier in Edmonton with few complaints, will also be used at the men's world championship in Victoria next month.

"There are no issues with the rocks now," MCA executive director Ian Staniloff said earlier this week. "They wouldn't use them at the worlds if they didn't like them."

CASH CRUNCH: While the MCA may have lost as much as $14,000 because the number of entries was short for the annual spiel, Staniloff expects both Souris, which hosted the Scott Tournament of Hearts, and Selkirk (Safeway Select) to announce profits.

In fact, it may even be among the best ever.

Staniloff, by the way, is quite sure that Steinbach will host next year's Select.

Meanwhile, the MCA is looking for ways to address the shortage of entries in the bonspiel and indications are that the Victoria Inn will remain bonspiel HQ.

JUNIOR CLASSIC: The eighth annual Optimist Club of Assiniboia Junior Curling Classic, which opens at the Assiniboine Memorial Curling Club tomorrow, has lured 45 teams -- the most ever. The Classic offers a total purse of $8,000, with $2,400 going to the main-event winner and $1,000 to the runner-up.


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