The weekend saw nearly 50 squash players competing in the Ogier Senior Squash Championships. This is an annual event where players compete to be Island Champion, it also goes a long way towards selection for the inter insular in March.
This year saw the introduction of a “D” grade event aimed at increasing the number of club level players taking part in the tournament. In all there were five events for players to take part in resulting in competitive matches throughout the weekend. The titles went to Martin Watts (Grade A), Jeremy Taylor (Grade B), Shane Cotter (Grade C), Igor Pirnau (Grade D) and Issey Norman-Ross (Ladies).
In the “A” Grade the top four seeds all made it through to the semi-finals where Martin Watts took on Janick Radford and Henry Birch played Mark Le Conte. Both matches produced some excellent squash and could have gone either way. Birch got off to a good start taking the first two games 11/6 11/4, Le Conte then raised his game coming back to take the 3rd game 11/7. Birch regained his focus in the fourth game and raced to a 6/0 lead, after a mini come back from Le Conte went on to take game 11/3 and the match 3-1. The other semi-final was one of many close matches over the weekend, Martin Watts took the first game against Janick Radford 11/6, the second and third games both went to tie break with radford taking them 12/10, 13/11 to take a 2-1 lead. Watts then called on all his experience to come back and take the next two games 11/6, 11/6 and the match 3-2 in a match that lasted 100 minutes. The final was closer than the score line suggested, despite some competitive rallies Watts remained in control and went on to take the title 11/8 11/6 11/5. Andy Biggins came back from two games down against Zak Parsons to take the “A” Grade Plate.
The “B” Grade final was contested between two junior players, with Jeremy Taylor looking to go one step further than last year against Patrick Josey. Taylor played precise, controlled squash throughout the tournament going on to win without dropping any games. The “B” Grade plate went to Nick Maunder in another five set match against Chris De Putron.
Shane Cotter retained his “C” grade title, comfortably making his way through the first three rounds to reach the final against Bruce Tostevin. Cotter started the better of the two taking the first game 11/3 before Tostevin levelled the match, taking the second game 11/6. The pace of the match increased with both players looking to increase the pressure, it was Cotter who remained the most consistent going on to take the next two games 11/8, 11/5. Junior player Jake Haines came through two tie breaks to beat Alex Rowles in the Grade C Plate final.
The Grade “D” event saw eventually winner Igor Pirnau work hard to reach the final, Pirnau was taken to five games by Jac Lindley and Mick Le Noury on his way to the final against Greg Josey which Pirnau took 3-1. Lauren Ker narrowly lost out to Jonathan Choi in the Grade “D” Plate final in another five game match.
The final of the ladies event saw Issey Norman-Ross defeat Natalie Dodd 3-0 to take the title.
Martin Watts said “It was a great to see so many close match over the weekend, including another grade has meant that more players have been able to enjoy a great weekend of squash”, “thanks go to Ogier for their continued support”