Talandracas and Park Place Capture Victories on Day 2 of King Power Gold Cup
The second day of play in the 2019 King Power Gold Cup featured two intriguing match-ups with an exciting opening game resulting in Talandracas narrowly defeating Dubai 8-7, while Park Place claimed the 11-7 victory over La Bamba de Areco at Cowdray Park Polo Club.
The first game of the day produced an evenly matched affair, with Talandracas overcoming 33% shooting from the field with perfect 4 for 4 shooting from the penalty line against Dubai. Despite committing 13 fouls compared to just 6 for Dubai, Talandracas conceded just two penalty attempts as the rest were Penalty 5’s, allowing Talandracas to organize their defence. Dubai held the edge in open play, but their indiscipline in the third and fourth chukkas led to a four-goal deficit, which they were unable to overcome in the 8-7 defeat.
A defensive style of game was prevalent in the opening two chukkas, with Talandracas winning the possession battle, but unable to convert them into goals, converting just 2 of their six shot attempts to begin the game. Julian de Lusarreta and Hughes Carmignac contributed with a goal and an assist each for Talandracas but the score remained tied at 2-2. The game changed in the third chukka, with Dubai held off the scoreboard and Talandracas producing a four-goal chukka behind perfect 3 for 3 shooting from the penalty line for Francisco Elizalde to finish the first half holding a 6-2 lead.
Talandracas continued with their organized defensive effort into the second half, stifling the potent Dubai offense to maintain their four-goal lead with Camilo Castagnola and Elizalde trading goals. Fortunate to commit primarily Penalty 5’s, the loss of possession caught up to Talandracas in the fifth chukka, as three fouls gave Dubai the extra possessions they needed to fight back into the game. Brothers Camilo and Bartolome Castagnola provided all goal scoring for Dubai, including a goal each in the fifth chukka to cut the deficit in half to two with just one chukka remaining. Completing an impressive run of five unanswered goals, Dubai scored the opening two goals of the final chukka with the Castagnola duo continuing to pace the offense. With time nearly expired, Talandracas picked up the ball on their own end line and through two accurate passes found Carmignac on the breakaway and under immense pressure he completed the run to secure the thrilling 8-7 victory for Talandracas.
The second game of the day resulted in all eight players finding the scoresheet in a fast-paced game that saw Park Place and La Bamba de Areco battle it out in open play. Both teams shot effectively from the field in a game of few opportunities, with Park Place holding the slight edge at 75% compared to 67% for La Bamba de Areco. Park Place separated themselves in the game with a strong final two chukkas, outscoring La Bamba de Areco 6-3 to claim the victory.
Controlling the throw-in line early, La Bamba de Areco attacked downfield and keeping Park Place in their own half, leading to a goal each from David Stirling and Kian Hall to give La Bamba de Areco the slim 2-1 lead. A fast pace saw few fouls for the remainder of the first half, with turnovers forced in the centre of the field, leaving shot opportunities at a minimum. Park Place was especially strong containing the elite duo of David Stirling and Juan Martin Nero, keeping La Bamba de Areco off the scoreboard in the second and third chukkas. Two goals from Benjamin Urquiza pushed Park Place into the 4-2 lead in the low-scoring game at halftime.
The backline of La Bamba de Areco came alive to begin the second half, led by Stirling who contributed a goal and an assist to pressure the Park Place defence and generate more scoring opportunities. In what had been an otherwise clean game, the fifth chukka saw five penalty attempts, with four in favour of La Bamba de Areco, but they converted just one, leaving Park Place in the lead after a two-goal chukka from Juan Britos. Quiet throughout the first four chukkas, Britos led Park Place to victory with an impressive three-goal final chukka to lead all players with five goals and guide Park Place to the 11-7 victory.