Curling team skipped by Jill Brothers to represent N.S. at Scotties Tournament of Hearts

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The women's curling team skipped by Jill Brothers will represent Nova Scotia at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Alberta next month.

The team was invited to attend by the Nova Scotia Curling Association after the provincial championships for men and women were cancelled due to the pandemic.

The event, set for Feb. 19-28, will be played in a bubble in Calgary.

It wasn't an easy decision under the current circumstances, Brothers said.

"It's part of my nature to just want to win. I just really like to compete. If I could curl for a living I would."

The team found out on Monday it had being given the nod to represent Nova Scotia. It was asked to make a decision by Wednesday.

The team asked for an extra day before confirming it would be able to go.

Family and work support helped with decision

Brothers, a 37-year-old Halifax hair stylist who has two young children, said she wouldn't be going if her family and work didn't support her.

But the entire team isn't going. Sarah Murphy has opted to stay home. Another player was undecided until Friday, but has chosen to make the trip.

Emma Logan, the team's alternate, will move into the regular lineup.

"Sarah, in her gut, just doesn't feel right about it and we totally respect her answer," said Brothers, who will be making her fifth appearance at the Scotties. "We're going to miss her a lot and I know she'll have a hard time watching it on TV and not being there, we have no hard feelings whatsoever."

The decision to attend the Scotties is a commitment of nearly a month.

The team will have to travel to the bubble. There will be testing prior to the event, the competition itself and the return trip to Nova Scotia. A two-week isolation period will be required upon return.

A team skipped by Mary-Anne Arsenault won the Nova Scotia championship in 2020, but Arsenault has since moved to B.C.

Nova Scotia men's lineup undetermined

Jamie Murphy's team, the 2020 provincial men's champion, has been invited to attend the Tim Hortons Brier in March. It will also be played in the Calgary bubble.

But Murphy has declined, citing travel risks and the isolation period required on return.

His team is still looking for someone to replace him.

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