On a perfect day for polo at Valiente Farm, history was made in the much-anticipated final of the prestigious Sterling Cup. For the first time, the world’s No. 1-ranked polo player Adolfo Cambiaso, 42, and two of his children, 15-year-old Mia and 12-year-old Poroto, won their first-ever high goal tournament together.
Valiente (Poroto Cambiaso, 1, Mia Cambiaso, 1, Magoo Laprida, 8, Adolfo Cambiaso, 10) knocked off one of the pre-tournament favorites Audi (Marc Ganzi, 2, Henry Porter, 2, Nic Roldan, 8, Nico Pieres, 8), 10-4, Friday in the 20-goal championship tournament.
“It was great fun,” Adolfo Cambiaso said. “It was amazing. It was a good thing they played well and played safe. It’s always the dream of a father to play with your kids as long as they enjoy it and have fun.
“I am just living in this moment. We have never played together anywhere like this in a competitive tournament. I don’t know how good they are going to be, but at least today we had fun and enjoyed it and that’s the main thing.”
Mia Cambiaso was named the game’s Most Valuable Player and Adolfo Cambiaso was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player. Adolfo Cambiaso and Laprida, making his Valiente team debut in the Sterling Cup, each had three goals. Mia and Poroto Cambiaso each scored two goals. Roldan led Audi with three goals, including two penalty conversions, and Pieres added one goal.
“This was really fun playing with my father and brother and honor to be MVP,” said Mia Cambiaso, after winning her second MVP award in a U.S. tournament. “I do enjoy polo and I like horses. I have been playing a long time since I was a baby.”
Mia Cambiaso was also MVP of the Santa Rita Handicap where she and her brother played for Valiente and won their first tournament as teammates in the U.S. in April 2017. Mia Cambiaso was also a member of La Dolfina, winners of the first Argentine Women’s Open last November.
Mia and Poroto Cambiaso are believed to be the youngest players to win the Sterling Cup. No one was prouder of her family than wife of 17 years and mother of three Maria Vazquez watching the game from the players’ tent.
“For them I really believe that people don’t understand, the higher goal you play, it is easier and safer to play because of the quality of polo,” Adolfo Cambiaso said. “People when in low goal they don’t know where to go. You play against Nico and Nic, they know where to go, you don’t need to crash anybody to play good polo. I know that the kids are going to be safe. Many patrons should understand that. You play higher, you are more safer, that is the way I see it.”
Valiente outscored Audi, 4-2, in the fourth and fifth chukkers for an 8-3 lead going into the final chukker. Audi, plagued with penalties, missed scoring opportunities and unforced errors, could never find its rhythm
The Cambiaso family also swept all three polo pony honors. The American Polo Horse Association best registered horse of the game was Bionica, played by Mia Cambiaso and owned by J5 Equestrian. The horse’s groom received $100 from APHA executive director Tiana Smicklas. The Grand Champions Polo Club Best Playing Pony for the game was Dolfina El Boeing, a stallion played by Adolfo Cambiaso. The Grand Champions Polo Club Best Playing Pony for the tournament was Julieta, played by Poroto Cambiaso.