Guernsey islanders Patrick Ogier and Rob West were part of the successful British Padel team that qualified for the Veteran’s World Championships to be held in Las Vegas in March.
The pair travelled to Dublin this weekend to form the over 35’s pair in the qualifying event where they were vying for 4 spots in Las Vegas. The six teams of France, Sweden, Germany, Great Britain, Denmark and Ireland were split into two groups of three, with the Brits drawing Sweden and Ireland.
Each tie comprised five matches in different age categories (over 55s, 50s, 45s, 40s and 35s). The British Team began the weekend with a convincing 5-0 win over Ireland, putting them in a strong position to qualify. With Sweden defeating Ireland on Saturday, the British team’s qualification was assured and the team will head to Las Vegas for the Veteran’s World Championships on 26th-28th March.
On Sunday, Great Britain played Sweden with both teams safe in the knowledge they had already qualified for Las Vegas. One of Europe’s strongest padel nations, the Swedes won the tie comfortably 5-0. Ogier & West put in a strong performance against the Swedish over 35s pair,
Andre Schlyter and Henrik Kronholm, but were defeated 2-6, 5-7. As a marker of the depth of talent in Sweden, Schlyter is ranked at number 22 in Sweden’s national open rankings, twenty places above former world number 4 and 9 time Grand Slam tennis champion Jonas Bjorkman.
In the second group, France qualified in first position with Germany narrowly defeating Denmark 3-2 to secure their place in the World Championship finals.
Reflecting on the weekend, Patrick said: “It has been a brilliant experience to be here in Dublin as part of such a high level event. The team spirit in the GB team is wonderful and it is thrilling that we have now qualified for the World Championships in Las Vegas.
“Padel in Guernsey is becoming more and more popular, just as it is in many parts of the world, and it has been a superb experience to be able to learn from and pit ourselves against players from stronger nations. Sweden has a huge padel scene with hundreds of thousands of active players so Rob and I were encouraged that we were able to give our opponents a decent run for their money today.”
Rob added “It is a great opportunity to be part of Team GB, and has been something that we’ve learnt and benefitted from already. The goal of this weekend was to be one of the teams that qualified for the main 16-team World Championships in Las Vegas, which we have done. So, overall a great weekend and we’re very much looking forward to the main event!”
Guernsey Padel would like to thank Aurigny for supporting the team by flying Rob and Patrick to the tie. Sponsorship opportunities exist to help Rob and Pat fund their trip to Las Vegas and also to sponsor the wider British team. Please contact email@example.com if you would be interested in supporting them.