Eve Muirhead and her team of reigning women's curling world champions have become the first athletes confirmed to represent Great Britain at next year's Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Muirhead claimed a thrilling final stone victory over Sweden in Riga in March to win her first senior world title alongside Claire Hamilton, Anna Sloan and Vicki Adams.

The 23-year-old made her Olympic debut when she skipped a different Great Britain curling team to the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver but failed to qualify for the semi-finals.

Muirhead said: "This will be my second Olympics and I'm excited - having won the worlds this year we want to continue our winning streak.

"It's not often we get to compete as Team GB and, as proud as we are to compete for Scotland, it's great to be part of a British team too."

Muirhead will be aiming to emulate British women's head coach Rhona Howie, who as Rhona Martin scored a famous gold medal triumph over Switzerland in Salt Lake City in 2002.

Howie said: "Competing at an Olympics is the highlight of any athlete's career and I'd like to congratulate each of the girls on their selection - they're a talented team and they all richly deserve their places on the flight to Sochi."

Team GB's chef de mission for Sochi, Mike Hay, a former world curling silver medallist himself, added: "I am delighted to welcome the curlers as the first members of Team GB.

"They are reigning world champions and earned the right for Team GB to be represented at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games with their performances at the past two World Championships.

"The 2013 season was their best ever, adding the Players' Championships to their world crown so they know how to win and what it takes to be successful at major events.

"With Eve skipping the rink they also have Olympic experience to draw on from Vancouver 2010 so they are well equipped to challenge for medals in Sochi."