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Mon 5th Jun 2017

Queen’s Cup Update

The war for the Semi Finals continues

Over the weekend, four matches fought a battle of wills to reach the next stage of The Cartier Queen’s Cup: 
Saturday 3 June  
Michael Bickford’s team, La Indiana remain unbeaten and are looking the strongest candidates to head up League One. However, El Remanso gave them a major scare on Saturday 3 June as they came back from 4-1 down in the second chukka to take the lead 7-6 in the fifth. The all-English team put on a great performance on The Duke’s Ground and had lots of vocal support from the spectators. This was anyone’s game in the second half and both teams carried on fighting until the final whistle. In fact, this match was so tight that extra time looked likely. But, with Nic Roldan picking up a ball from teammate Luke Tomlinson and then running it all the way to goal, La Indiana’s victory was assured, taking home the win 10-9.
Next up, Talandracas faced Sommelier. Talandracas have had mixed fortunes in this year’s competition but secured their second victory, this time over Sommelier. The latter was also looking for their second win and as Fred Mannix said in a tweet before the game: “Win tomorrow and we play the Quarter Finals of The Queen’s Cup”. It was not to be though as Talandracas, minus their patron, but playing the young Englishman Will Harper in his place, put up three goals in the first chukka to none in reply from Sommelier. Sommelier gradually placed themselves back into the game and by the end of the fourth chukka were only trailing 10-7. However, time was against them and Talandracas, who had been consistent throughout all six chukkas, with goals from Pelón Stirling, Jack Hyde, Sapo Caset and Will Harper, won the match 13-9.
Sunday 4 June
RH Polo remains unbeaten after Sunday’s comfortable 10-8 win over Hilali Noordeen’s Sifani team. This was a fairly quiet game at Coworth Park and although Sifani levelled the scores twice – first with a 60-yard penalty from Julian de Lusarreta in the third chukka and then a goal from John Paul Clarkin in the fourth – RH Polo remained calm. They were in the driving seat from the first chukka and just to emphasise the point, Adolfo Cambiaso sprung into life in the final chukka, firing through the final two goals of the match. However, this was very much a team effort with patron Ben Soleimani scoring twice, as did Tommy Beresford, while Rodrigo de Andrade successfully converted a penalty.
The second game of the day was a tighter and faster affair, with both teams looking for that all-important Quarter Final knockout place. La Bamba de Areco were without their patron Jean Francois Deçaux, instead fielding young Ned Hine. They also welcomed back Diego Cavanagh after his fall last week. La Bamba had control of this match in the first two chukkas and were 4-3 up at the start of the third. Murus Sanctus turned things around in the third with Facundo Sola scoring first in this chukka. Hilario Ulloa then converted a penalty and Corinne Ricard herself scored. With Min Podesta putting through the twelfth goal of the match, Murus Sanctus were in the lead, 7-5, going into half-time. However, La Bamba de Areco must have had an amazing team talk as they shot through two goals and two penalties to none in reply from Murus Sanctus to take a 9-7 lead in the fourth. It was the opposite story in the fifth chukka, with Ulloa scoring twice to level the scores going into the sixth. This game was still very open, but thanks to three more goals for La Bamba de Areco when it mattered, they won the match, and the Richard Watt Cup, 12-10. Sola’s team might not have won, but he would have undoubtedly won the best goal of the tournament prize. In this Final chukka, Sola hit the ball from around the centre of the field, but it bounced. Incredibly he connected his stick to the ball in mid-air and scored!
The next matches are on Tuesday 6 June, when Sommelier will take on La Indiana at 11am and El Remanso will take on Monterosso at 3pm.
A full form guide to the teams is featured in the June issue of Polo Times. We will also be featuring up-to-date reports online. Not a subscriber? Don’t miss out and click here to subscribe.
The Cartier Queen’s Cup Teams:
El Remanso (21): Charlie Hanbury (4), Ollie Cudmore (5), James Beim (6) & James Harper (6)
Murus Sanctus (22): Corinne Ricard (0), Hilario Ulloa (10), Facundo Sola (8) & ‘Min’ Podesta (4)
La Indiana (22): Michael Bickford (1), Nic Roldan (7), Agustin Merlos (8) & Luke Tomlinson (6)
RH Polo(22): Ben Soleimani (0), Tommy Beresford (4), Adolfo Cambiaso (10) & Rodrigo de Andrade (8)
Monterosso Polo Team (22): Alessandro Bazzoni (1), Ignacio Toccalino (8), Santiago Toccalino (8) & Matt Perry (5)
La Bamba De Areco (22): Jean François Deçaux/Ned Hine (0 substitute 4 June), Diego Cavanagh (8), Cristian Laprida (8) & Rodrigo Rueda Jnr (6)
Sifani (21): Hilali Noordeen (0), John Paul Clarkin (7), Julian de Lusarreta (7) & Guillermo Terrera (8)
Talandracas Polo Team (22): Edouard Carmignac/Will Harper (0 substitute 3 June), Guillermo Caset (9), ‘Pelon’ Stirling (10) & Jack Hyde (3)
King Power (22): ‘Top’ Srivaddhanaprabha (1), Charles Cooney (1)/Hugo Taylor (1), Gonzalo Pieres (10) & Facundo Pieres (10)
Sommelier (22): George Hanbury (3), Juan Gris Zavaleta (7), Fred Mannix Jnr (8) & Alec White (4)
Don’t wait until the Cartier Queen’s Cup Semi Finals before securing your hospitality or grandstand tickets for Finals day on Sunday 18 June. This year’s league matches have proved very popular, with packed grandstands every weekend. So if you haven’t yet reserved your seat for what could be the match of the year, book today. Grandstand seats cost from £55. Non-members can also purchase the ultimate in polo hospitality – Clubhouse all-day dining, featuring a champagne reception, three-course lunch, grandstand seat, allocated parking and afternoon tea. Find out more by calling the Club’s Sales & Events Team on 01784 437797 or emailing sales@guardspoloclub.com
Photograph: Nic Roldan holding the line for La Indiana at Guards Polo Club. By Melissa Bastin ©www.poloimages.org

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