The Raleigh Captures 2011 Beach Polo World Cup
By Alex Webbe
The seventh annual AMG Miami Beach Polo World Cup presented by Nespresso, the worldâ€™s largest and most prestigious Beach Polo tournament culminated on Sunday, April 24 with its closing day of exciting matches and highly anticipated grand finale.
A resilient Raleigh team, made up of Bash Kazi, Pelon Escapite and Luis Escobar, fought the 2010 defending champions, Hublot, to take the AMG Miami Beach Polo World Cup title, with a final score of 10-6, set before a record crowd. Four goals from Mexicoâ€™s Pelon Escapite, including three in the final chukker shut the door on a talented Hublot team that trailed throughout the match. Luis Escobar from Costa Rica lead the Raleigh team with five goals on the day. Pelon Escapite was named MVP for the tournament.
â€œTheyâ€™re a very good team,â€ confessed Hublotâ€™s Kris Kampsen following the game. â€œThey just out-played us today.â€
Earlier in the day, Grey Goose scored an 8-5 win over AMG-Mercedes, captained by host of Americaâ€™s Most Wanted, John Walsh, in the Carl Fisher International Cup with Raul â€œGringoâ€ Colombres from Argentina taking MVP honors. The Julius Fleischman Memorial Cup went to the Yellow Cab team in a 9-5 win over LAN/Comcast. Brandon Phillips and Argentinaâ€™s Mauricio Devrient scored four goals apiece, with Devrient being named MVP. The 9 year-old Chestnut Mare, ridden by Hublotâ€™s Kris Kampsen, was named Best Playing Pony.
â€œThis yearâ€™s event was the most successful to-date,â€ said Bruce Orosz, founder and president of The Polo Life, producers of The AMG Miami Beach World Cup. â€œWe set a record attendance each day as a result of the tremendous buzz that spread throughout Miami Beach during the course of the week. This yearâ€™s world-class level of play raised the bar for years to come and the fierce competition between the players in the arena kept the crowd on the edge of their seats. We thank all of our wonderful sponsors, patrons and everyone behind-the-scenes who helped make this yearâ€™s competition such an outstanding success. We look forward to seeing everyone again next year.â€