Readers of this blog know I’m not a big fan of the two-person-throw-then-get-up-and-chase-after-your-rock-and-sweep-it competition known as Mixed Doubles, but it’s hard not to like the feel-good story of the Quebec duo that won the first Canadian trials and will represent Canada at the, ahem, world championship in New Brunswick.
Robert Desjardins and Isabelle Néron went 4-3 in the round robin and then caught fire in the playoffs to earn the overall title.
What made the win special was Neron, who was coming back to the game after a three-year absence, and for good reason.
It was an especially sweet victory for Néron, who was returning to the ice this season after spending the past three years battling breast cancer.
"It's incredible, that's the only word I can say — incredible," marveled the 43-year-old Neron, who previously represented Quebec at the 2008 Canadian mixed championship in Calgary, playing third for Simon Dupuis. "Just to be in the playoffs was my gift because of the last three years. There was no pressure. Every new game is a gift. I'm already so happy — just throw the rocks, and if it works, it's a bonus."
Desjardins, who played in two Briers, actually was more excited about his latest accomplishment.
"I'm totally excited," said Desjardins. "It's the best thing in my curling career. I've been to two Briers, but, man, I just won the first Canadian mixed doubles championship. Nobody else can ever say that. It's unbelievable."
You can read the rest of the story (which mysteriously reads a lot like an Al Cameron piece) in the Island Sports News.