USA’s Tommy Biddle named most valuable player
Lake Worth, FL March 16, 2015 – The United States Polo Association® (USPA) today announced that the United States defeated England 17-12 in Saturday night’s historic 22-Goal USPA Townsend International Challenge Cup at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California. The U.S. team included 10-goal player Tommy Biddle, who played on the United States’ Townsend Cup winning team in 2011 and is the highest-rated arena polo player in the world, seven-goal player Kris Kampsen and five-goal player Jared Sheldon.
With 2 handicap goals given to England at the start of the game, it was a lightning fast rematch. Andrew Blake Thomas of England scored the first goal of the evening putting England on a solid foot at the end of the first chukker leading 6 to 5. In the second chukker, USA came on strong and led the score 10 to 7 at half. The second half of the match had back and forth goals but England couldn’t make up the first-half deficit
The USA’s Tommy Biddle led all scorers with eight goals, and was named Most Valuable Player. The Best Playing Pony was Zambezi, a 13 year-old mare owned by George Dill and played by Kris Kampsen.
The match is now available for on-demand viewing at www.chukker.tv.
The USPA Townsend International Challenge Cup is an arena polo competition traditionally played between teams from the U.S. and England. The inaugural Townsend Cup between England and the U.S. was played in Manhattan in 1923. This match spurred the growth and development of arena polo in the U.S., but the Townsend Cup wasn’t played again until 2004 and then again in 2008, 2011 and 2013. In 2013, England defeated the U.S. to win the Cup for the first time. The U.S. holds the series edge 5-1. The tournament is named in honor of John R. Townsend, a New York City social figure who was an active advocate for arena polo in the early years of its development.
“This historic Townsend International Challenge Cup between two great rivals couldn’t have been any better. The speed and precision of the players and horses were incredible to watch,” said George Dill, Chairman of the United States Polo Association’s International Committee. “Both teams represented their countries well and showcased the high standard of International polo as well as highlighted how American polo has grown and developed in the United States.”