GSOC reveals triple knockout brackets for season-opening Masters

Team Mouat's Hammy McMillan (left) and Grant Hardie (right) sweep a stone during the 2019 Masters in North Bay, Ontario. (Anil Mungal)

Bruce Mouat and his Scottish squad's quest for a third consecutive Pinty's Grand Slam of Curling men's title will begin against Team Rich Ruohonen of the United States during the opening day of action at the Masters.

The Pinty's Grand Slam of Curling announced Friday the first round of triple knockout matches for its season-opening event Oct. 19-24 at Sixteen Mile Sports Complex in Oakville, Ont.

The Masters has expanded this season to include 16 of the top men's teams and 16 of the top women's teams from around the world, up from 15 per division in previous years. Also new to the Masters for 2021 is the triple knockout preliminary round where teams must win three games before they lose three games in order to qualify for the playoffs.

Some notable matches on day one: Team Tracy Fleury of East St. Paul, Man., and Japan’s Team Sayaka Yoshimura square off in the second draw (Oct. 19, 11:30 a.m. ET) in a rematch of the most recent Masters women’s final in 2019. Fleury won 7-5 to capture her first career Grand Slam women’s title as a skip. Mouat, who swept through last season’s Champions Cup and Players’ Championship men’s events in the Calgary bubble, takes on Ruohonen in the third draw (Oct. 19, 3 p.m. ET). Regina's Team Matt Dunstone are the reigning men's champions and begin their title defence against Switzerland's Team Peter de Cruz in draw four (Oct. 19, 6:30 p.m. ET).

Draw 1: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 8 a.m. ET

• Team Anna Hasselborg vs. Team Tori Koana
• Team Jennifer Jones vs. Team Tabitha Peterson
• Team Kerri Einarson vs. Team Isabella Wrana
• Team Alina Kovaleva vs. Team Eun-Jung Kim

Draw 2: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 11:30 a.m. ET

• Team Tracy Fleury vs. Team Sayaka Yoshimura
• Team Rachel Homan vs. Team Kelsey Rocque
• Team Silvana Tirinzoni vs. Team Un-Chi Gim
• Team Satsuki Fujisawa vs. Team Min-Ji Kim

Draw 3: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 3 p.m. ET

• Team Bruce Mouat vs. Team Rich Ruohonen
• Team Brendan Bottcher vs. Team Ross Paterson
• Team Brad Gushue vs. Team Ross Whyte
• Team John Epping vs. Team Yannick Schwaller

Draw 4: Tuesday, Oct. 19, 6:30 p.m. ET

• Team Matt Dunstone vs. Team Peter de Cruz
• Team Niklas Edin vs. Team Jason Gunnlaugson
• Team Brad Jacobs vs. Team Yuta Matsumura
• Team Kevin Koe vs. Team Mike McEwen

Triple knockout action runs through to Saturday, Oct. 23, with quarterfinals and semifinals also scheduled for that date. Both men's and women's finals are slated for Sunday, Oct. 24.

Can’t make it to Oakville? Tune to Sportsnet and Sportsnet NOW for live broadcast coverage. Broadcast schedule to be announced.

The Masters is the first of five events on the 2021-22 Pinty's Grand Slam of Curling calendar.

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