Here's the statement from the CCA in regard to the Grand Slam's decision to use the five-rock rule in Kingston in December. Basically, as long as there is unanimous consent among the players, the points will count.
The Grand Slam scheduled in Kingston this December, has been allocated and will therefore potentially contribute a significant amount of points to the 2011-12 Canadian Team Ranking System (CTRS). In turn, the CTRS plays a critical role in, and contributes significantly to the 2014 Olympic Qualification System. The CCA, as the sole recognized governing body of curling within Canada, has the ultimate jurisdictional role within the aforesaid qualification process. As the custodians of the Olympic Qualification Process (OQP), the CCA is solely responsible for the accountability and overall integrity of the process and therefore all potential appeals would go through us. With that in mind, we need to do our best to ensure the OQP is in fact risk adverse such that it can properly withstand any potential challenge. Any initiative to modify the rules of engagement, on the field of play, part way through the Olympic Quadrennial requires the pre-approval of the CCA.
Given the fact that this did not occur in advance of going public with the proposed five (5) rock rule field test at the Kingston Slam, the CCA was put in a difficult position.
That aside, the CCA does sincerely appreciate that the objective is to enhance the marketability of the 8-end game by potentially introducing more offence into what some stakeholders believe has become a defensive-oriented, lower scoring game. However, in doing so this may impact the final outcome of the event and the CTRS points that will be awarded accordingly. It should also be noted that since the inception of this quadrennial, and as posted on the CCA’s website, that the CTRS eligibility criteria states that the four (4) rock rule must be used.
Having said that, we are however prepared to continue to sanction the Kingston event, and ensure CTRS points are still eligible with the following conditions;
* All participating Canadian Teams in the Grand Slam in Kingston will need to sign individual player waivers indicating their unanimous support of this rule modification initiative at the event.
* The CCA would be responsible to design said waiver and would set a deadline date to have such returned to by each participant athlete.
* As agreed between the President of the Players Association and the CCA’s Director, High Performance, if unanimous support is not received then the proposed rule modification would be withdrawn to ensure the availability of CTRS points and consistent athlete acceptance of the existing paramtres for the OQP.
* It is also understood that any and all events with CTRS status, that are contemplating any rule modification, will require pre-approval from the CCA.
We believe the aforementioned is a very reasonable compromise.