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Jones, Gushue open Grand Slam of Curling season with wins at Elite 10

CHATHAM-KENT, Ont. — Reigning world champion Jennifer Jones and her Winnipeg-based rink beat Edmonton's Chelsea Carey 4 & 2 on Wednesday to kick off the inaugural women's competition at the Elite 10.

CHATHAM-KENT, Ont. — Reigning world champion Jennifer Jones and her Winnipeg-based rink beat Edmonton's Chelsea Carey 4 & 2 on Wednesday to kick off the inaugural women's competition at the Elite 10.

It was a clean shutout for Jones, who scored checkmarks in four ends with Carey claiming none at the Grand Slam of Curling event.

Originally a men's invitational, the Grand Slam of Curling added a women's division to the Elite 10 this season.

Points are scored in match play by either counting two or more rocks (with the hammer) or stealing at least one rock (without the hammer).

The Elite 10 has three additional unique rules: Stopwatches are banned, tick shots cannot be performed on guards sitting on the centre line until the fifth rock of play, and teams have four minutes of thinking time per end.

Anna Hasselborg of Sweden also scored a win to start by downing Jamie Sinclair from Blaine, Minn., 3 & 2.

In men's play, Brad Gushue of St. John's, N.L., opened his season with a 3 & 2 win over Jason Gunnlaugson of Morris, Man., 

Toronto's John Epping thumped Glenn Howard of Penetanguishene, Ont., 4 & 2 and Winnipeg's Reid Carruthers stole one in the eighth end to escape with a 1UP win over Brad Jacobs of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.

The top six teams overall, regardless of pools, qualify for the weekend playoffs.

The Canadian Press