SAPPORO, Japan - Canada's Jennifer Jones earned two victories Monday to move into a first-place tie at the women's world curling championship.
The Winnipeg skip topped China's Sijia Liu 7-1 in the morning draw and the held off Russia's Anna Sidorova 7-5 at the Tsukisamu Gymnasium.
"I was happy with how we played — we finally had two games back to back where we played well and made some big shots and some big draws," Jones said. "It was a big win so we're happy."
Jones and her team of third Kaitlyn Lawes, second Jill Officer and lead Dawn McEwen were tied with Russia, Japan and Switzerland at 4-1 after eight draws.
In the late game, Canada went ahead to stay in the seventh end when Lawes made an inturn draw behind cover that the Russians couldn't remove. That allowed Jones to make an open hit for two for a 6-3 lead.
Russia would pull within one with a pair in the ninth. But two perfect ticks from McEwen started the 10th end and Jones finished it with a draw to the button for the victory.
"That was a fun day, it felt good," said McEwen. "We picked it up after our loss to Sweden (on Sunday) and it feels like things are starting to fall into place. We made some shots and Jen made a pistol there for the win, so that felt great."
In the early game against China, Jones scored a deuce in the third and added singles in four of the next five ends.
McEwen had a strong effort in both games. She threw at an 88 per cent clip against China and was at 87 per cent against Russia.
Her teammates had shooting percentages in the mid-70s for both games. However, they managed to get results when needed, especially against Russia.
"We had a great day today," Jones said. "We made a ton of draws, a ton of big shots and I felt really good with the speed of the ice this game. I felt like we had a lot more control.
"In the other games, it felt like we were chasing a lot and having to make big shots to save ends instead of big shots for extra points. That changed today and hopefully that change will stay for the rest of the week."
China, Germany and Scotland were tied in fifth place at 3-2. Finland and Sweden were next at 2-3.
On Tuesday, Canada will play Aileen Sormunen of the U.S. (0-5) and Denmark's Lene Nielsen (0-5).
The top four teams at the end of round-robin play will advance to the Page playoffs.
A Canadian team hasn't won gold at this event since Jones did so in 2008. The five-time national champion made her world championship debut in 2005 and won a silver medal in 2010.
Canada leads all countries with 15 gold medals and 31 podium appearances at the world championship since 1979.
Sweden is next with eight gold and 23 total medals.