By Diana Butler, Director of Communications Guards Polo Club. Photo by Tony Ramirez, www.imagesofpolo.com.
Yesterday I wrote about the dangers of betting on polo matches as the unexpected can happen.
This premise seems even more true today. Sifani (rec 1 goal on handicap) won their second game of this year’s tournament to earn them a quarter-final match against the current holders, King Power Foxes. Hilali Noordeen’s team defeated Apes Hill 9-8 in a close game at Coworth Park.
This was a battle between the two Tomlinson boys – Mark for Apes Hill and Luke for Sifani – but there was little air between these two sides for much of the match. The score was 3-3 at half-time and 5-5 after the fourth.
Two goals to Sifani in the fifth, to only one from Apes Hill, gave Sifani that all important edge. Then with both teams scoring two goals in the final chukka, that one-goal difference was enough to see Sifani through to the next round.
The first match of the day was a match of equals with 8th placed HB Polo playing 9th placed Valiente/Dubai (rec 2 goals). However, the writing was on the wall by half-time with Valiente/Dubai failing to score at all in the first three chukkas, giving the Pailloncy brothers’ HB Polo a massive 8-2 lead.
Valiente/Dubai got into the game in the fourth, scoring four goals to none in reply from HB Polo, but the damage had been done. Incredibly Valiente/Dubai failed to score at all again in the sixth and so HB won through 12-8, earning them a quarter-final contest against Dubai at 11am on Saturday morning!
The final knockout match of the day was another surprising result. The highly regarded Talandracas were knocked out by La Bamba De Areco, who like Sifani, were registering their second match of the tournament.
Talandracas led after the first chukka, but Jean Francois Decaux’s La Bamba came back into the game and levelled the scores, 3-3 at half-time. They then pulled away in the second half in this afternoon game at Coworth Park and went on to win the match 9-8. Winning when it matters propels La Bamba into the quarter-finals and a match against La Indiana at 11am on Sunday morning.
Cartier Queen’s Cup Quarter-Finals
Saturday 4 June
11am Dubai v HB Polo at Les Lions
3pm King Power Foxes v Sifani atSmith’s Lawn
Sunday 5 June
11am La Indiana v La Bamba De Areco at Billingbear
3pm Zacara v RH Polo at Smith’s Lawn. The winner will receive the Gerard Leigh Cup.