'Proud' Edinburgh curling club hopes Jennifer Dodds success inspires greater interest

The president of Jennifer Dodds’ Edinburgh curling club has stated his immense pride at seeing the local athlete grow into an Olympic gold medalist.

By Craig Fowler
Monday, 21st February 2022, 5:00 pm
Updated Monday, 21st February 2022, 5:02 pm
Milli Smith, Hailey Duff, Jennifer Dodds, Vicky Wright and Eve Muirhead: the gold-medal winning Team GB curling side at the Winter Olympics. Picture: Getty
Milli Smith, Hailey Duff, Jennifer Dodds, Vicky Wright and Eve Muirhead: the gold-medal winning Team GB curling side at the Winter Olympics. Picture: Getty

Sean Murphy, president of Curl Edinburgh, has witnessed Dodds progress from a curious eight-year-old trying out the sport for the first time to competing regularly on the world stage.

It’s culminated with Dodds tasting victory at the Winter Games in Beijing on Sunday morning as part of Eve Muirhead’s victorious Team GB side, who blew away opponents Japan in the gold medal match.

“I felt a huge amount of pride seeing Jennifer earn a gold,” Murphy told the Evening News. I've seen her from the age of eight, coming through our junior club which is Gogar Park Young Curlers and then playing competitively and then on to British Curling and the elite squad.

“Her parents are both keen curlers and known around the curling community in Edinburgh. They're both members of the club.

“Jennifer will come back and she'll be playing with us and against us, very much as part of the club. And she's an Olympian, and a gold medal Olympian at that. So yes, I'm very proud.”

Murphy now hopes the success of Dodds, and fellow Edinburgh-born mixed doubles parter Bruce Mouat, who won silver as leader of the men’s team, leads to greater participation.

“You hope young kids see and want to come along and try curling,” he said. “If they come along for a club game they may see Jennifer or Bruce and think 'I could do that'.

“It's a sport where you can be playing against these guys, these Olympians, then go upstairs and have drink afterwards with them in the bar.

“If they've inspired people to come then that's great because curling is an ageing demographic, if you look at the numbers. We want to get more people in and raising the profile of the sport during the Olympics is key, especially when they're coming back with a gold and a silver and it's members of Curl Edinburgh contributing to that.

“We're loving the profile the sport is getting and hope it helps us at Curl Edinburgh because running an ice rink is an expensive business. It's a facility-led sport, it depends on the ice rinks, so getting people through the door is key.”

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