Ogier proves he has not lost his competitive streak

PHIL OGIER was delighted to prove that while he is ‘getting on a bit, I’m still not necessarily a pushover’ as he won this week’s Senior Group Tournament.

Phil Ogier won the Senior Group Tournament for the 11th time. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 25946776)
Phil Ogier won the Senior Group Tournament for the 11th time. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 25946776)

The 45-year-old added another title to his extensive CV on Monday night, beating a couple of this year’s successful Island Games team in the process, and admitted with a chuckle that it was ‘nice to mix it up a bit’ among the newer generation.

‘I’m really pleased with the win. It was a little bit unexpected, but having said that it’s not a case that I have not been playing well of late.

‘They have always been tight games against these guys, but in the last couple of seasons I have probably come out just on the wrong side of the results whereas [on Monday night] I came out on the right side.

‘The funny thing is, I really have not picked up a bat since the Inter-Insulars. I played maybe an hour over the summer and then the first league match last week, so it’s a little bit surprising in that sense, but I suppose I also did not put any pressure on myself because of that.’

Having dropped just one single in topping his group, Ogier beat Dan Collenette 3-1 in the quarter-finals to set up a last-four meeting with Ben Foss.

He came through that test 11-8, 5-11, 14-12, 6-11, 11-3 to earn a shot at island champion Lawrence Stacey in the final.

The showpiece turned out to be a see-saw encounter, Stacey twice forging a set ahead only for Ogier to level things and force a decider, which he went on to take 11-7.

‘It was nip-and-tuck in the final. There was only a game in it at any time. I had a 10-7 lead in the first game but went on to lose it in deuce and I was thinking that might prove costly,’ Ogier said.

‘Probably the most satisfying thing from my point of view is that I maintained my performance through two hard five-setters and managed to get through against the best players there on the night, so that’s pleasing. To get wins against a couple of island players on one night is a good result.

‘It shows that they have to keep working. I might not play or train as much as I used to, but I have not lost my competitive streak and they know they are going to have to work hard on every point – I’m not going to give any away.’

  • More in Thursday's Guernsey Press.

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