By Sohail Ali
LAHORE, Feb 12 (APP): BN Polo booked berth in the main final and Barry’s in the subsidiary final of the Pantera Energy Aibak Polo Cup 2021 after winning their respective matches played here at the Lahore Polo Club ground on Friday.
BN Polo were up against Master Paints and both the sides played quality polo and matched fire-with-fire till the end, and after a tough fight, BN Polo managed to win the crucial match by 7-6, thanks to high-flying Eulogio Celestino, who emerged as hero of the day by smashing in six superb goals while Raja Mikail Sami converted one goal.
Marcos Panelo, along with Farooq Amin Sufi and Juan Cruz Losada, fought gallantly for Master Paints, but their efforts couldn’t bear fruit for their side. Panelo slammed in a hat-trick, Farooq a brace and Losada one goal.
Master Paints started the match well by converting a 60-yard penalty to take 1-0 lead, which couldn’t last long, as BN Polo made a tremendous comeback and thrashed in three back-to-back goals to gain 3-1 lead.
Master Paints bounced well in the second chukker and banged in a brace to level the score at 3-all.
The highly-charged third chukker was evenly poised as both the sides converted three goals one after another to draw the score at 6-all.
In the fourth and decisive chukker, BN’s hero hammered the match-winning goal to steer his side to a narrow 7-6 victory. Nicolas Scortichini and Marcelo Garrahan officiated the match as field umpires.
Earlier the match between Barry’s and DS Polo/ASC proved to be a one-sided affair, where Barry’s fully dominated and won the encounter by 9-3½. Ernesto Trotz was star of the day from the winning side, as he cracked a classic quart while Santiago Gomes Romero and Nafees Barry banged in a brace and Syed Turab Rizvi converted one. DS Polo/ASC had a half goal handicap advantage, while Hissam Ali Hyder, Lt Col Omer Minhas and Ahmed Bilal Riaz scored one goal each.
Both the teams were off to good start as they converted one goal each in the first chukker to make 1-all. DS Polo/ASC then struck one in the second chukker to take 2-1 lead, which couldn’t last long as Barry’s bounced back in great style and thrashed in two back-to-back goals to earn 3-2 lead. Barry’s maintained their supremacy in the third chukker as well as they slammed in a brace against one by DS Polo/ASC to further enhance their lead to 5-3.
The fourth chukker was fully dominated by Barry’s where they cracked a classic quartet to win the match 9-3½. Nicolas Scortichini and Marcelo Garrahan were the field umpires.