Curlers not happy with this hack

Norway's Thomas Ulsrud in Continental Cup action. His pants were suspended, but his broom still...

Norway's Thomas Ulsrud in Continental Cup action. His pants were suspended, but his broom still boasted that crazy pattern. (CCA/Michael Burns)

GEORGE KARRYS, Special to QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:52 AM ET

TORONTO - And now, for your reading pleasure, some recent Roaring Game huzzahs and catcalls.

HOORAY to Canadian TV sport gurus for allowing a few of our hundreds of annual hours of curling TV coverage to be webstreamed for viewing outside our borders, without geo-blocking. CBC kicked it off by partnering with Toronto’s iSport to offer Grand Slam games for a variety of fees — all of them reasonable. Not to be outdone, TSN has allowed international viewers to access online Video On Demand content from the recent Continental Cup.

BOO to the Continental Cup event managers, who banned the legendary Norwegian Curing Pants from competition which briefly caused a small firestorm of protests.

In truth, the Canadian Curling Association was in a no-win position. The Cup featured two oversized squads, Team World versus Team North America, meaning that every World athlete would have to wear those awful, wonderful pants to conform to event rules. However, only Thomas Ulsrud’s Oslo foursome regularly wear them — or want to wear them — and so the CCA was accused of, well, lameness.

Amplified BOOS to the cyber criminals who launched a computer hack attack on various curling websites. On Jan. 14, years of curling data, including proprietary event results and statistics, were destroyed at CurlingZone.com, WorldCurlingTour.com, OntarioCurlingTour.com and even at the website for that titan of journalism organizations, the Canadian Curling Reporters!

“I couldn’t believe it,” said CurlingZone web wizard Gerry Geurts. “Who hacks curling websites? I mean, come on.”

Geurts has been seeking help from a U.S. IT curling kingpin whose own websites recently fended off a cyber assault originating from China and Korea. At press time, the Canadian-based sites were still down for the count.

Meanwhile, there could be a HOORAY on the way from outraged curling fans who have flooded The Curling News blog to pledge monetary support for the rebuild. One hopes they will deliver, as Geurts believes he is “looking at a cost of about six grand to recover the data.” Time to step up, cyber-curling peeps.

HOORAY to the TSN sports talk show Off The Record, which will feature an all-curling show on Thursday. Calgary’s Cheryl Bernard, Scotland’s David Murdoch and the two Kevins — Edmonton’s Martin and Koe — will be in the spotlight before the TSN Curling Skins Game hits the ice, live at Casino Rama Jan. 22-23. And a big advance BOO to Martin if he mercilessly thrashes the ladies in their battle of the sexes, much like Glenn Howard’s boys did to the unfortunate Jennifer Jones two years ago. Of course, there’s also an epic BOO awaiting Martin if he manages to lose — to girls. That’s right: it’s another no-win scenario.

HOORAY to the CCA for a new batch of cool TV commercials for the sport of curling.

Now, let’s try to get those commercials aired during hockey games, or entertainment shows like American Idol. Lean on that extended CTV partner.

Finally, HOORAY to all 1,200 persons involved in the TCA Goldline men’s bonspiel.

The historic event went smoothly and featured victories for Richmond Hill’s Greg Balsdon, Thornhill’s Jim Morrison and Oakville’s Bob Edmondson among others. Another HOORAY to CityTV for using this column as inspiration to broadcast a feature on the tournament, and also to nominate one of the teams (Tam Heather’s Dave Hampton) as their Athlete(s) Of The Week.

But CityTV also gets a BOO for scalping some of this column’s words, verbatim, without giving appropriate credit. A simple oversight, mind you, which can be remedied with a small cheque ... to be forwarded to CurlingZone.

George Karrys is: curlinguru.com


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