Val Sweeting delivers a stone during the WestJet Players' Championship women's final Sunday in Toronto. (Anil Mungal)

Sweeting, Gushue to open Humpty’s Champions Cup

April 18, 2017, 5:29 PM

It’s a clash of the champions to kick off the closing event of the 2016-17 Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling season.

Tour Challenge victor Val Sweeting of Edmonton faces Boost National winner Kerri Einarson of Winnipeg in the opening draw of the Humpty’s Champions Cup, which starts next Tuesday at WinSport Arena at Canada Olympic Park in Calgary.

The Pinty’s GSOC series announced the full draw schedule Tuesday. Click here to see the full draw schedule.

Sweeting added another trophy to her haul Sunday during the WestJet Players’ Championship by clinching the Rogers Grand Slam Cup as the season champion in the series.

The Humpty’s Champions Cup features 15 men’s teams and 15 women’s teams in one final showdown before the summer. Teams had to win a high-profile event over the course of the season in order to receive an invite.

Reigning world champ Brad Gushue of St. John’s, N.L., is also in action on opening night and goes up against Pacific-Asia winner Yusuke Morozumi of Japan.

Elsewhere, European Championship winner Victoria Moiseeva of Russia makes her Pinty’s GSOC series debut against Meridian Canadian Open champ Casey Scheidegger of Lethbridge, Alta.

Shorty Jenkins Classic winner Kevin Koe of Calgary kicks off his hometown tournament taking on Tour Challenge Tier 2 victor Greg Balsdon of Kingston, Ont.

WFG Masters champ Allison Flaxey of Caledon, Ont., meets world junior champion Isabella Wrana of Sweden. The 19-year-old Wrana will be playing in her first Pinty’s GSOC tournament and follows in the footsteps of her older brother Rasmus Wrana, who has won three titles in the series during his rookie season with Team Niklas Edin.

Each team plays four round-robin games with the top eight qualifying for the weekend playoffs. Tiebreaker games may be required to determine the final spot(s).

The Humpty’s Champions Cup is the newest of the seven events in the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling series. The inaugural tournament was held last season in Sherwood Park, Alta. Winnipeg teams reigned with Jennifer Jones defeating Ottawa’s Rachel Homan in a classic showdown for the women’s title and Reid Carruthers claiming the men’s trophy in a thrilling double extra end victory over Toronto’s John Epping.

Both will get the chance to defend their titles, however, Carruthers will not be competing as he’s off to represent Canada at the world mixed doubles championship with Team Homan’s Joanne Courtney. Third Braeden Moskowy will skip Team Carruthers at the Humpty’s Champions Cup with second Derek Samagalski and lead Colin Hodgson also moving up in the lineup. Alternate/adviser Craig Savill, a two-time world and 12-time Grand Slam champion, makes his debut with Team Carruthers at lead.

Tickets are available for the Humpty’s Champions Cup, visit or call 1-855-985-5000 to purchase yours today. If you can’t make it to Calgary, Sportsnet will have you covered starting April 27, click here for the TV schedule. Watch Sportsnet’s broadcast online at Sportsnet NOW (Canada) or (international).

Men’s Pools

Pool A Pool B Pool C
Niklas Edin
WFG Masters
Brad Gushue
Meridian Canadian Open
Reid Carruthers
Humpty’s Champions Cup
defending champ
John Epping
WCT/CCT spot
Mike McEwen
WCT/CCT spot
DEKALB Superspiel
Brad Jacobs
Boost National
Kevin Koe
WCT/CCT spot
Shorty Jenkins Classic
Steve Laycock
WCT/CCT spot
DHD Fall Classic
De Cruz
Peter de Cruz
WCT/CCT spot
Baden Masters
John Shuster
U.S. nationals
Tom Brewster
WCT/CCT spot
Mercure Perth Masters
John Morris
Princess Auto Elite 10
Greg Balsdon
WCT/CCT spot
Tour Challenge Tier 2
Yusuke Morozumi
Pacific-Asia championship
Grant Hardie
WCT/CCT spot

Women’s Pools

Pool A Pool B Pool C
Rachel Homan
Scotties Tournament of Hearts
Jennifer Jones
Humpty’s Champions Cup
defending champ
Silvana Tirinzoni
WCT/CCT spot
Stu Sells Oakville
Val Sweeting
Tour Challenge Tier 1
Allison Flaxey
WFG Masters
Anna Hasselborg
WCT/CCT spot
Stockholm Ladies Cup
Casey Scheidegger
Meridian Canadian Open
Eve Muirhead
WCT/CCT spot
Women’s Masters Basel
Bingyu Wang
WCT/CCT spot
Colonial Squares
Ladies Classic
Kerri Einarson
Boost National
Alina Paetz
WCT/CCT spot
International Bernese
Ladies Cup
Jacqueline Harrison
WCT/CCT spot
Tour Challenge Tier 2
Victoria Moiseeva
European Championship
Isabella Wrana
World junior championship
Jamie Sinclair
U.S. nationals

Note: In the event a team won two or more eligible tournaments, the next-ranked WCT/CCT winner based on strength of field was invited. World junior men’s champ Ki-jeong Lee and Pacific-Asia women’s champ EunJung Kim declined their invites.