By Alex Webbe
The opening Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup game of the day was a rematch of last year’s final with King Power Foxes (Hugo Taylor, Jimbo Fewster, Gonzalito Pieres and Facundo Pieres) holding off a last chukker rally to defeat La Indiana (Michael Bickford, Nic Roldan, Agustin Merlos and Luke Tomlinson), 9-7.
King Power shoed early muscle, outscoring La Indiana 3-1 in the first chukker. Gonzalito Pieres scored the first goal of the game followed by a goal from his brother Facundo Pieres to make it 2-0. Agustin Merlos converted a penalty shot that cut the King Power lead back to one goal, 2-1, with Jimbo Fewster closing out the scoring with his first goal of the day for a 3-1 King Power advantage.
An aggressive La Indiana offense took the field in the second and quickly made headway. Supported by shutout defense, Nic Roldan scored first followed by a pair of goals from Merlos. At the end of the second it was La Indiana with the lead, 4-3.
Goals were hard to come by in the third with King Power settling for penalty goals from Gonzalito Pieres and Facundo Pieres. La Indiana was held scoreless and trailed 5-4 at the end of the first half.
Determined efforts by both sides were thwarted by stellar defensive efforts as the second half got underway. Facundo Peres scored the only goal of the chukker, extending the King Power lead to two goals, 6-4.
King Power continued to roll in the fifth with goals from each of the Pieres brothers that had them in the lead by four goals, 8-4. Roldan got La Indiana on the scoreboard with the final goal of the period, but it was King Power in control of the game, 8-5.
A last chukker rally by La Indiana witnessed goals from Merlos and Roldan that brought them to within a goal of the lead, 8-7, but that would be as close as they would get. Fewster scored the final goal of the game in securing the King Power victory, 9-7.
Facundo Pieres scored a team-high four goals for King Power. Gonzalito Pieres added three goals and Fewster scored twice for the win. Merlos led the La Indiana attack with four goals. Roldan was credited with three goals in the loss.
Monterosso 10, RH Polo 9
In the upset of the tournament, Alessandro Bazzoni’s Monterosso polo team (Alessandro Bazzoni, Ignacio Toccalino, Santiago Toccalino and Matt Perry) handed RH Polo (Ben Soleimani, Tommy Beresford, Adolfo Cambiaso and Rodrigo Andrade) their first loss of the British high-goal season, 10-9.
RH Polo had been impressive as they captured the 2017 Cartier Queens Cup without losing a game, but were unable to control The Toccalino brothers in their opening British Open match.
Tommy Beresford scored the first goal of the game followed by a goal from Ignacio Toccalino, 1-1. Brazilian 8-goaler Rodrigo Andrade scored the final goal of the period, giving RH Polo the early 2-1 lead.
Andrade’s second score of the match was followed by a goal from Adolfo Cambiaso, 4-1. Beresford’s second goal of the day extended the RH Polo lead to four goals, 5-1. Santiago Toccalino kept Monterosso from being shutout with the final goal of the chukker. The lead, however, belonged to RH Polo, 5-2.
RH Polo came up with single goals from Andrade and Cambiaso in the third. Santiago Toccalino scored Monterosso’s only goal of the period, giving RH Polo a four-goal, 7-3 halftime advantage.
Monterosso must have had an impressive halftime talk because they returned to the game in the fourth chukker on fire. Three goals from Ignacio Toccalino and a single goal from Santiago Toccalino had Monterosso trailing by a single goal, 8-7, with two periods remaining in regulation play. Andrade was responsible for RH Polo’s only score of the chukker.
Matt Perry’s first goal of the afternoon opened the scoring in the fifth and tied the game at 8-8. Beresford took the lead back for RH Polo, 9-8. Santiago Toccalino scored the final goal of the period, leveling the score at 9-9 with one chukker left to play.
Play was fast, physical and close in the final minutes of the game. A missed penalty shot by Cambiaso and a goal from the field from Perry gave the game to Monterosso for their second win of the season (Monterosso won a subsidiary knockout semifinal match in Queens Cup play).
Santiago and Ignacio Toccalino scored four goals apiece for the win. Perry scored twice, including the game winner. Andrade’s four goals set the pace for RH Polo. Beresford added three goals and Cambiaso scored twice in a losing effort.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup action continues on Saturday, July 1st with Sommelier (George Hanbury, Juan Gris Zavaleta, Fred Mannix and Alec White) taking on Talandracas (Edouard Carmignac, Guillermo Caset, Pelon Stirling and Jack Hyde) in a 3PM contest.
Photos: Ana Clara Cozzi
To see all the teams and results click here