Aiming to improve Welsh Curling on the international stage.
About the project
Team Pougher are the Welsh National Men's Curling team for the 2015/16 season.
Currently ranked 26th in the world, our team consists of five players. This season, our main tournament will be the European Curling Championships in Esbjerg, Denmark in November. We will also be participating in the Scottish Curling Tour, competing against the top teams in the UK and Europe.
We estimate that it costs in excess of £16,000 to run our team for 1 season, including practice, competitions and the European, we do not receive funding for any of these amounts. Our costs are as follows:
Tops – £30 per top – up to 6 required per person
Jackets – £32 – £36 per jacket – 2 required per person
Trousers – £50 – £85
Shoes – £200 – £300
Broom – £70 – £120
Training & Competitions
A typical competition involves travel to Scotland, 2 nights stay and an entry fee, which usually costs around £850 between 4 players including subsistence.
With limited access to ice in Wales, training on good quality ice has to take place in Scotland, which adds to costs
Fuel to get to Scotland – £60 – £80
Cost to stay per night/person – £30 – £40
Training Ice cost 2hrs per team – £50 – £100
Competition entry per team – £200 – £400
European Curling Championships
Flights – £250 per person
Transfers – £95 per person
Accommodation – £420 per person
Events at Europeans – £110 per person
Plus food etc. whilst away.
Team Background: The team line-up has changed slightly this year. Our former skip has stepped down to play in the Senior division from next year, with Jamie Fletcher stepping in to replace him.
Skip: James Pougher – James started curling in 2002 and has developed through the Junior ranks to become a full member of the Men’s team in 2007. He has won 6 Welsh Championship titles, one of which when he was skip.
Third: Jamie Fletcher – After a period away from curling, Jamie returned to the ice in 2014. He played Third on the team that won the 2015 Welsh Curling Championships and possesses a wealth of competitive experience from playing in his native Canada. He now qualifies for Wales on residency.
Second: Rhys Phillips – Rhys started curling in 2002 and has developed through the Junior ranks to become a full member of the Men’s team in 2010. He has played four successive Welsh Championships and made the final each year including one Welsh Championship title.
Lead: Garry Coombs – Garry started curling in 2010. He rapidly improved from a beginner to national team standard. His quick progress saw him selected to the Men’s team in 2013.
Alternate: Simon Pougher – Simon was selected to the Men’s team in 2014 and competed in the 2014 European Championships.
James, Rhys and Garry were part of the team that won the gold medal in the European Championship C division in Taarnby, Denmark in 2013. This won us promotion back to the B group where we will be competing in this year’s European Championships in Esbjerg, Denmark.
James, Rhys, Garry and Simon were part of the team that competed in the 2014 European Championships. This time, in the B division, we were one win away from a playoff to fight for a place in the A division. Despite that disappointment, we left the Championships as the only team to have defeated Team Finland, who went on to finish fourth at the 2014 World Curling Championships.
Season Goals: This year, our main goal is promotion to the European A division. To realise this goal, we need to finish as one of the top two teams at the European Championships in November. A gold medal here would also put us in a playoff to qualify for the 2016 World Curling Championships in Switzerland.
Preparation: There are many events in Scotland and Europe that give the team the level of opposition that it expects to meet at the European Championships. This year, we will be competing in the Scottish Curling Tour in the months leading up to the European Championships in November.