Canada’s paracurling team will face South Korea for bronze. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Canada misses chance to play for Para curling gold after last-shot loss to China

GANGNEUNG, Korea, Republic Of — Canadian curling’s gold medal run at the Paralympics is over.

Canada dropped a last-rock decision to China in Friday’s semifinals, and will face South Korea for bronze.

A Canadian team has won gold in every Paralympics since the sport made its debut in 2006.

“You know what? I am proud,” skip Mark Ineson said of his team of Ina Forrest, Dennis Thiessen, and Maria Wright.

”I’m really proud of the way that the team played. We put ourselves in a good position to medal and we played well.”

The game was tied 3-3 in the final end when China’s Wang Haitao played a perfect tap to the button for the victory.

“He made a beauty in the last end to win,” Ideson said. “That’s world class. That’s the Paralympics. He made a beauty, so good on him. He deserved it.”

China will play Norway for the gold.

Canada’s back-and-forth semifinal wasn’t lacking for controversy. In the seventh end, a rock hit Ideson’s chair. Wang then pushed the burned rock so it was the closest to the button, which led to protests from the Canadians, and talk on social media of unsportsmanlike play.

“I don’t think it affected the outcome of the game,” Ideson said. “It may have affected the shot right after that, but it didn’t affect the outcome of the game.”

Officials talked at length, eventually ruling that the rock would remain in the back of the rings for what ended up being a blanked end, setting up the deciding final end.

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