Murus Sanctus and Dubai Claim Victories on Day 3 of Cartier Queen’s Cup
The first round of games in the 2019 Cartier Queen’s Cup concluded on the third day of play with Murus Sanctus completing a final chukka comeback to claim the thrilling 9-8 victory at Manor Farm, while Dubai displayed a dominant performance in a 12-5 victory over Emlor on the Queen’s Ground at Guards Polo Club.
The opening game of the day produced a back and forth affair between Murus Sanctus and Scone, with the defensive effort from Scone limiting Murus Sanctus’ chances from the field until the final chukka. Despite being a fast-paced, low fouling game, Murus Sanctus took advantage of each Scone foul to pace their offence from the penalty line, but Nico Pieres was accurate from the field, converting four of his five shot attempts to lead the game with six goals. After scoring just three field goals over the first five chukkas, Murus Sanctus exploded for three field goals to complete the comeback and claim the narrow one-goal victory.
Scone took an early two-goal lead after consecutive goals from Nico Pieres, while Facundo Sola responded for Murus Sanctus with a Penalty 3 conversion. A defensive battle broke out for the remainder of the half, with little time and space for open runs to goal after Murus Sanctus restored the tie on another penalty conversion for Sola. Scoring all four of his team’s goals in the opening half, Pieres was dominant on the attack, but it was Murus Sanctus that looked to take the lead before the end of the half. Receiving three penalty attempts, Sola converted just one, leaving the game tied at 4-4 leading into the second half.
Improving their discipline, Scone began to take control of the game to begin the second half with the duo of Pieres and James Harper combining for two goals each on accurate 3 for 4 shooting from the field and a Penalty 4 conversion. Unable to generate any further offense from the penalty line, Murus Sanctus found themselves trailing by two entering the final chukka. Increasing their passing accuracy drove Murus Sanctus’ comeback attempt, with Tommy Beresford opening the scoring to reduce the deficit to one. Inside the final minute, Murus Sanctus still trailed, but a perfect neckshot pass from Beresford set-up Sola to tie the game. With 30 seconds left, Sola won the following throw-in, finding Gonzalito Pieres on a breakaway, as he found the goal, giving Murus Sanctus the thrilling 9-8 victory.
The final game of the opening round featured an impressive offensive output from Dubai, overwhelming Emlor in every area of the game after a slow first chukka. Outshooting Emlor 19-5, Dubai held possession in the attacking half throughout most of the game, with the story of the game the performance of Camilo Castagnola who finished with an astounding 11 goals for Dubai. After a scoreless opening chukka, Dubai took advantage of Emlor foul trouble to score three goals from the penalty line and hold a 4-1 lead, with Emlor’s lone goal coming from handicap. Two more goals from Camilo Castagnola, along with a field goal from Rosendo Torreguitar extended Dubai’s lead to six, while Emlor’s struggles in open play continued, recording zero shots for the second consecutive chukka.
The relentless attack of Dubai continued into the second half, with Camilo Castagnola on the receiving end of a Bartolome Castagnola pass for his eighth goal of the game. Agustin Merlos broke Emlor’s scoreless run with a penalty conversion, but the deficit continued to increase with Emlor unable to produce any consistent offensive opportunities. Camilo Castagnola capped an impressive performance with his 11th goal in the final chukka, as three late Emlor goals were not enough to close the large deficit, as Dubai completed the commanding 12-5 victory.