September 3rd, 2012 Add comment
The 2012 Russian Open Moscow Polo Club
Winners with Jaguar
On the 25th August, Moscow Polo Club went ahead with the 7th edition of the Russian Open, sponsored by long-term club sponsors Jaguar Land Rover and, for the first time ever, the Final was a six-chukka one. The weather was warm and cloudy, but no rainfalls and a very green field led to excellent playing conditions. The hotly-contested match saw the Land Rover team take on the local Moscow Polo Club team, which pooled the club resources of ponies and players.
Prior to the match, Hernán Traverso, Moscow Polo Club's Argentine professional, was in charge of a riding/technique clinic, and there was also a parade of polo ponies, with a group of novice players showing the huge crowd that polo is easy to learn!
Land Rover were the favourites, but Moscow Polo Club foursome jumped to an early 3-1 lead in the first chukka, with some brilliant moves by Hernán Traverso and his speedy grey pony "Rocket". By the end of the second chukka, Land Rover had recovered and had moved ahead, 4-3. The third was again dominated by Land Rover, and the teams left the field at half-time with Land Rover winning 8-4 following two goals from club President Alexis Rodzianko and pinpoint penalties by Alejandro Traverso.
After the crowd had taken to the field for some treading-in, the teams returned and Land Rover seemed to be in a trance as they watched Moscow Polo Club draw to within one goal at 11-10 by the end of the fifth. Hernán Traverso played outstandingly well, scoring at will from the most improbable locations, with some long and accurate shots. He was ably supported by his teammates, who also fought hard. Scores from Egor Zaostrovtsev and Misha Rodzianko (the highest handicapped Russian Player at 2 goals) in the final chukka sealed the title for Land Rover, 13-10.
MVP honours fell to Moscow Polo Club's Hernán Traverso, who played brilliantly throughout the match, leading his team in both attack and defence. He was responsible for 6 of his team's 10 goals and saved at least another 5! Hernán was presented with a trophy and a weekend for two at Castel Monastero, in Tuscany, Italy.
Veteran polo pony Monja (ridden by Alexis Rodzianko) won Best Playing Pony honours. Now aged 15, Monja was one of the first ponies to arrive at the club in 2003.
The event, which is the most important tournament of the Russian polo season, attracted many spectators, who enjoyed some great cocktails served by club sponsors Beluga Vodka. After the prize-giving, players and friends stayed for an asado and were treated to a parade of hot air balloons which floated over the polo field from the nearby balloonists club.
Alexis Rodzianko -1
Misha Rodzianko 2
Egor Zaostrovtsev 0
Alejandro Traverso 5
Moscow Polo Club
Hernan Traverso 4
David Geovanis 1
Pavel Isaev 0
Evgeni Ovcharov 0
Raya Sidorenko -1
Igor Menshenin -1