Ten teams have entered the 2017 Cartier Queen’s Cup tournament and have been drawn into two leagues of five. The tournament started today and continues through until the final on Sunday 18 June.
League Two: King Power Foxes 15 – 11 Sifani at Billingbear
First in action were the 2015 winners King Power Foxes v Hilali Noordeen’s Sifani. Sifani had changed their line-up – the New Zealand international John Paul Clarkin replacing Jeronimo del Carril, making them a 22-goal team and this quartet looked like they were going to cause a major upset to the form on the first day of the tournament. Guillermo Terrera scored first for Sifani and Julian de Lusarreta and Clarkin followed up this show of strength, taking the score to 5-0 to Sifani at the end of the first chukka. Of course a class team like King Power are rarely out of the frame for long and it was their turn to dominate in the second, with goals from Top Srivaddhanaprbha and Facundo Pieres closing the gap to 5-4 to Sifani at the end of that chukka.
King Power Foxes gradually pulled away in the remaining chukkas, with all the team, including the young Englishman Charles Cooney, finding the flags. Sifani always kept them in sight though, thanks to some continuous goal scoring from last year’s Cartier Most Valuable Player Julian de Lusarreta and Sifani has signalled with this game that they are a team to be reckoned with in 2017.
League One: El Remanso 13 – 10 Talandracas at Guards Polo Club
Charlie Hanbury is the only patron to field an all-English team in this year’s competition and his decision to go local paid off today, with El Remanso (rec 1 goal on handicap) beating Edouard Carmignac’s Talandracas, winners of the 2011 Queen’s Cup, 13-10 on The Queen’s Ground. El Remanso, featuring the England team captain James Beim, dominated the first half of the match and were 8 – 3 up at half-time, even if they did fail to score at all in the second. This scoreline is even more impressive as Talandracas has some great pony power and this year is fielding the former El Remanso star Pelon Stirling, one of five 10-goalers in this year’s tournament. So it was not a surprise to see Talandracas haul themselves back into this game in the second half, but it was not enough to get themselves ahead of Hanbury’s boys today.
So a really exciting start to this year’s 22-goal season and clearly we are promised some great matches over the next three weeks.
12noon La Indiana v Monterosso Polo Team at Coworth Park
3pm Murus Sanctus v RH Polo at Guards Polo Club
If you are watching the games live at a private ground you can pick up the commentary at 94fm