September 13 - Sapporo in Japan will host the women's 2015 World Curling Championships, it has been announced today.
The event, which will take place at the Tsukisamu Gymnasium, is due to run from March 14 to 22 2015 on the northern island of Hokkaido.
It will be will be hosted and organised by the Japan Curling Association (JCA) and represents the second time the country has hosted the event following on from Aomori in 2007, which was won by Canada.
"We are delighted to be returning to Japan for the World Women's Curling Championships in 2015," said World Curling Federation (WCF) President, Kate Caithness.
"Japan will always have a special place in the heart of curling as it is where our sport returned to the Olympic programme in 1998 at the Winter Games in Nagano.
"Since then, our sport has grown considerably throughout this region and we have no doubt that this event will drive further development in this part of the world."
Hosts Japan will gain automatic entry to the 2015 Championships and will be joined by the winners of the Pacific-Asia Curling Championship - or second placed team if Japan wins - along with the top two teams from the Americas region and the eight top placed teams at next year's European Curling Championships.
The 2013 men's and women's European Championships are due to take place in Stavanger, Norway, from November 23 to 30.
Russia are the defending women's European curling champions while Scotland, who lost out to the Russians in Karlstad last year, will be hoping to maintain their world champions status at next year's women's World Championships in Saint John in Brunswick, Canada.
The Tsukisamu Gymnasium played host to ice hockey matches during the 1972 Sapporo Winter Olympic Games and the city's Mayor, Fumio Ueda, has welcomed the decision to stage one of curling's marquee events at the famous venue.
"It is a great honour and pleasure for the city of Sapporo to be selected as host city of 2015 World Women's Curling Championship and to have an opportunity to see world-class performances from the top athletes," he said.
"I hope this will stimulate public interest in curling and lead to its further popularisation."
"I would like everyone to work together closely for the success of this Championship in the hope that people who participate in the event as well as those who come to watch the games enjoy a wonderful experience.
"In March 2015, the citizens of Sapporo will welcome you all with the mentality of 'Omotensashi' [hospitality]."
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