The visiting KSA Polo Team claimed an exciting one-goal victory over their UAE counterparts in an all-action exhibition polo match that brought the curtain down on the 2018-2019 polo season at Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club on Friday.
The highly-anticipated event, that featured some of the best polo players from Saudi Arabia, UAE, Kuwait and Argentina lived up to expectations with a well-contested match being played at the UAE’s only Royal Polo Club in Abu Dhabi.
It looked to be anybody’s match at the end of the first of the four chukkers with the scores locked 3-3. However, the visitors raised their game during the second seven-minute period hammering in three goals to the UAE’s lone conversion.
Argentinian pro Tomy Irairte struck a purple patch to account for all three of the goals with only Khalid Bin Drai finding the posts for the home team.
The UAE defended well during the third chukker during which they pulled back one goal to reduce the deficit to 5-6 and also denying KSA from adding to their tally.
There was all to play for in the fourth and final chukker as the UAE went flat out in search of levelling the scores. Drai, who played a big match, and Rashid Al Bawardi, scored a goal each, but a fifth from Irairte and another from Amr Zedan sealed victory for the visitors.
The exhibition match, which was held to mark the 2019 Year of Tolerance, was attended by members of the Royal family, dignitaries, senior officials and a large crowd of polo fans..
Ghantoot operates under the patronage and guidance of H.H. Sheikh Falah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
Meanwhile, HE Zayed Obaidy Al Zaabi, Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club’s incoming Managing Director hailed the match as a big success.
“I would like to congratulate the KSA Polo Team for their victory and for displaying excellent polo skills,” he said.
“Well done to the UAE Polo Team who fought bravely, and I wish them luck in future games.
“This match symbolises all that the Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club represents in its endeavour to promote the sport of polo and ensure that it continues to flourish in the UAE and Middle East,” Al Zaabi added.
He also thanked HH Sheikh Falah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Founder and Chairman of the Ghantoot Polo & Racing Club, for his continuous support.
“Without the encouragement a d partronage of His Highness Sheikh Falah nothing is achievable in the sport of polo which has a rich heritage in the UAE,” said Al Zaabi.
“His Highness is always behind us to strive for more success and to ensure that the sport, the facilities at Ghantoot and organisational skills are of the highest.”
Al Zaabi also thanked all the board members, officials and staff at Ghanoot for their commitment and all-round efforts throughout the 2018-2019 season.
He also commended the many companies that have supported Ghantoot and particularly thanked the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, Ghantoot’s Governing Partner and Emirates Polo Association.
Maserati – Premier Motors came in for praise as the Official Car at Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club.
KSA Polo Team defeated UAE Polo Team 8 goals to 7
KSA: Amr Zedan 3, Tomy Irairte 4, Souad Sabah 1, Abdulrahim Abbar 0
UAE: Rashid A; Bawardi 3, Khalid Bin Drai 4, Alya AlAwlaqi 0, Yousef Bin Dasmal 0.
UAE Polo Team
1 Alya AlAwlaqi -1
2 Khalid Bin Drai 1
3 Youssef Bin Desmal 1
4 Rashed Al Bawardi 2
KSA Polo Team
1 Souad Al Sabah -2
2 Abderrahman Al Abbar 0
3 Amr Zedan 0
4 Tomy Iriarte 4
Official Partners & Sponsored by:
1. Governing partner Abu Dhabi Sports Council
2. Emirates Polo Association
3. Official Car – Maserati – Premier Motors
4. Official Hotel – Golden Tulip Al Jazeera
5. Premier Events Management
6. Sobha Reality
7. Noor Al Wasl Clinic
8. Lootah Perfumes
- What: Year of Tolerance Polo Exhibition Game 2019
- When: 12th April 2019
- Where: Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club