The Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup for the 2015 British Open Championships at Cowdray Park Polo Club – Day 4
By Victoria Elsbury-Legg
1:00PM UAE 12 v 3 HB Polo (Group C) – Brooksfield
It seemed almost destined from the start that there might be another strong win for UAE at Cowdray in their second game of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup (having beaten RH polo in the opening match of the tournament 14-6). With goals won for both sides from penalties, it was Santi Stirling who found the first field goal to end chukka one with UAE at 5 goals to HB Polo’s 1. What followed in the next five chukkas was some fantastic teamwork from all of UAE, as Jose Araya and Santi Stirling demonstrated amazing defence enabling some beautiful play to take place between Pablo MacDonough and Lucas Monteverde – resulting in goals aplenty for the team in white.
It just wasn’t going to be HB Polo’s day as they scored only one more goal (in chukka 3) and MacDonough and Monteverde dominated the goal mouth at either end finally ending the game in double figures at UAE 12 v 3 HB Polo. Next up in the league stage of the tournament on Wednesday 1st July HB Polo meet RH Polo, whilst UAE meet King Power on Saturday 4th.
3:00PM Apes Hill 8 v 6 Salkeld (Group A/B) – Ambersham 1
Play then moved from Brooksfield to Ambersham 1 where two winners faced each other (Salkeld having beaten Zacara in a spectacular game of polo earlier in the week 16 v 15 on Tuesday, followed on Wednesday by another great match in which Apes Hill won 11 v 10 against Talandracas). Despite many goals being scored by both teams in their opening games it was not to be the case in their second matches. With clear support from all his team mates (via a banner on the Salkeld tent) Juan Gris Zavaleta was substituted by Inaki Laprida who played alongside Nick Clarke, Joaquim Pittaluga and Luke Tomlinson – who faced his brother Mark in Apes Hill with Tom Morley, Eduardo Novillo Astrada and Ralph Richardson.
At half time the scores read Apes Hill 4 v 2 Salkeld, and it certainly seemed as if the black and orange shirted Barbados sponsored team were determined to stay ahead as they headed into the final chukka with 7 goals facing the 4 on the yellow side of the scoreboard. A penalty taken by Luke in the final chukka was followed by another open goal penalty being given in favour of Salkeld after a member of Apes Hill crossed behind the goal before the ball was hit – this brought the scores a little closer at 7 v 5. A goal apiece was scored by either side before the final bell, with Apes Hill riding off the pitch the winners of their second league game at Apes Hill 8 v 6 Salkeld.
Day 5 – Sunday 28th June 2015
11:00AM King Power Foxes- v -VPS Healthcare Sifani Group A/B – Billingbear Park
3:00PM Zacara- v -Talandracas – Midhurst Town Cup Group A/B – Lawns 1
5:00PM Thai Polo- v -Dubai Group C – Lawns 2