La Indiana Remains Undefeated in Cartier Queen’s Cup
The eighth day of the 2019 Cartier Queen’s Cup featured a dominant 13-9 victory for VS King Power over Murus Sanctus, while the second game produced a thrilling overtime victory for La Indiana, as they remain undefeated after defeating Dubai 16-15 on the Duke’s Ground at Guards Polo Club.
The opening game of the day displayed a notable substitution for Murus Sanctus with Sapo Caset playing in place of Gonzalito Pieres, however the result was a stagnant offence in open play for Murus Sanctus as VS King Power controlled possession. Overcoming foul trouble, which led to six penalty conversions for Caset, VS King Power overwhelmed Murus Sanctus from the field in the victory. The opening half featured a relentless VS King Power attack that outscored Murus Sanctus 6-0 from the field, led by five goals from Polito Pieres. Held to just two shots, Murus Sanctus was able to draw fouls from the fast-paced VS King Power team, resulting in their only offence coming from three penalty conversions off the mallet of Caset. Holding a 4-2 lead after the second chukka, the third chukka proved to be crucial in the outcome of the game, with VS King Power outscoring Murus Sanctus 5-1 to take a commanding 9-3 lead at halftime, behind accurate 60% shooting from the field.
Seeking for offence during open play, Murus Sanctus doubled their first half shots in the fourth chukka alone, but Facundo Sola’s goal was the only conversion on four shot attempts, leaving Murus Sanctus unable to reduce the large six-goal deficit. Despite committing six fouls, VS King Power maintained their lead through the end of the fifth chukka, as their efficient attack continued to convert at a high rate, taking advantage of each opportunity during open play. A goal each from Sola and Caset in the final chukka was not enough to challenge VS King Power in the late stages of the game, resulting in the convincing 13-9 victory.
The second game featured a match-up of undefeated teams that produced an exciting game that needed overtime, with La Indiana claiming victory. The two high-powered offences produced at exceptional rates, with La Indiana shooting 86% from the field, while Dubai converted 67% of their attempts in a combined 31 goals in the game. Turning into a scoring contest between the two leading scorers in the tournament in Facundo Pieres and Camilo Castagnola, it was Pieres that held the slight edge. Receiving two goals on handicap, Dubai quickly saw their advantage erased in the opening chukka on three goals from Pieres, two from the field and a Penalty 3 conversion. Foul trouble for La Indiana saw Dubai reclaim their two-goal lead, due to three penalty conversions for Castagnola, who also added a field goal in the four-goal chukka for Dubai. The back and forth affair swung back in favour of La Indiana thanks to their dominance from the throw-in line, winning all six throw-ins in the third chukka to race back into the 10-9 lead in end-to-end action.
Dubai was kept on the defensive to begin the second half, unable to win possession from the throw-in line, losing four of five throw-ins to concede three goals from Pieres, who was effectively utilising the work of Rodrigo Andrade to create scoring opportunities. Holding a four-goal lead, La Indiana was seemingly in control until Bartolome Castagnola and Ignatius Du Plessis found Camilo Castagnola multiple times downfield as he finished with accuracy to score three goals, yet Dubai still found themselves facing a three-goal deficit with one chukka remaining. Generating offence from the penalty line, Castagnola scored his ninth and tenth goals of the game on Penalty 2 conversions, with Bartolome Castagnola completing the comeback, sending the game into overtime with the two teams tied at 15-15. Surviving a close Penalty 5 attempt from Pieres, Dubai was kept pinned in their own half, with a Pieres drive downfield leaving the ball in front of the Dubai goal. A backhand from Jimbo Fewster, allowed Andrade to jump on the ball and find the goal to send La Indiana to the thrilling 16-15 victory.