Goals were not in short supply as the high-anticipated HH The President of the UAE Polo Cup got off to a thrilling start at the Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club.
On a perfect day for polo Zedan Polo Team defeat Abu Dhabi Polo Team by seven goals to four while Desert Palm Polo Team edged UAE Polo Team by 11 goals to 10 in a cill-hanger match.
The opening day’s action provided the tournament which culminates in the Grand Final on March 29 the ideal lift-off with many more excitement in store for players and fans alike.
Despite two brillianly struck goals by HH Sheikha Maitha Bint Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktounm UAE fell short to the Desert Palm who were buoyed by the in-form Castagnolas, who accounted for seven goals between them.
Team leader Rashid Al Bawardi put his name on the scoreboard as well with Bensadon pumping in two to good effect.
Tony Panelo, one of the most exciting polo talents from Argentina, was industrious as he always is scoring four times for Sheikha Maitha’s UAE.
The match was poised on a knife’s edge for most of the five chikkers, but it was Desert Palm who went into the final chucker with a two-gaol advantage.
UAE threw everything they had into the match with goals by Sheikha Maitha and Tomy Panelo but Castagnola ensured victory for Desert Palm when he scored in the all-import chukker.
The game between Zedan and Abu Dhabi was well-contested despite what the scoreline might suggest.
Raul Aplacette played a big game for the former scoring s\four goals including three in the third chukker.
The tournament, which is held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Falah Bin Zayed Al Nahya, patron of Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club, is held over a league format with the top teams progressing for the final.
Zedan Polo Team 7 defeated Abu Dhabi Polo Team 4
Desert Palm Polo Team 11 defeated UAE Polo Team 10
AT A GLANCE
What: HH The President of the UAE Polo Cup
When: March 13 to 29
Where: Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club