SOCHI, Russia — Canada made a stuttering start to the defense of its Olympic curling title on Monday, following up a scrappy win over unheralded Germany with a surprise loss to Switzerland on a sobering day for the big gold-medal favorites.
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By the end of opening day, Sweden was the only team 2-for-2, with wins in tough matches against the Swiss and Britain at the Ice Cube Curling Center at the Sochi Games.
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It was a tough first day of competition for both the the U.S. men and women -- the day's late session ended poorly for skip John Shuster after a 7-4 loss to the Norwegians.
Embedded owg_slideshow: Germany, Canada kick off curling Day 1 in Sochi
After sweeping through the Canadian Olympic trials unbeaten, Brad Jacobs' team was widely seen as the overwhelming favorites for the games.
But Canada was sloppy in beating Germany 11-8 in the morning and then was upset 5-4 by Switzerland in the evening, giving plenty of hope to their rivals for the gold.