Team Dubai with the King Power Gold Cup | Image Credit: Mark Beaumont

Polo | Tournaments

Team Dubai Crowned The Champions Of 2019 Edition Of King Power Gold Cup

The battle for the King Power Gold Cup between Dubai and VS King Power saw an enthralling fight until the last second of the match.

The dreamy picturesque setting for a Polo game in the United Kingdom is the Cowdray Park Polo club at the River Ground. The home to the world-famous Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship, the Cowdray Park Polo Club offers exceptional playing opportunities with 10 immaculate pitches and an annual fixture list comprising over 30 competitions at all handicap levels. The 22-goal Gold Cup, one of the most prestigious tournaments of the British Polo Season was launched in 1956 and is played to decide the British Open Polo Championship. With all the international stars of the game in action in the incomparable setting of Cowdray Park’s famous lawns, the Gold Cup draws in Polo connoisseurs from all around the globe. The Gold Cup received the title sponsorship of King Power commencing from 2018 for the next three years. With more than 15000 visitors, King Power Gold Cup is the largest attended polo day in the U.K.

The 2019 edition of the King Power Gold Cup continued after a great semi-final encounter between VS King Power and Park Palace and Dubai and Scone Polo. VS King Power, who have added VS to the team’s name in memory of Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, met Dubai in a Gold Cup Final at Cowdray Park in 2014. The team line up for VS King Power had Vichai’s son ‘Top’ Srivaddhanaprabha played at number 1, Polito Pieres on number 2 slot, Marcos di Paola 0n 3 and Juan Martin Zubia playing at Back. Team Dubai’s line-up saw 16-year-old Camilo Castagnola at 1, Rashid Albwardy at 2, Bartolomé Castagnola at 3 and Ignacio du Plessis at Back.

King Power gold cup

The first chukker opened with Ignacio Pieres attempting a goal from a wide shot that missed the target by a few centimetres. The first chukker was comparitively slow as the teams were busy understanding each other’s gameplay and tactics. A build-up for a frantic activity resulted in a penalty being awarded in favor of Dubai which was converted into a goal from 30 yards by Camilo Castagnola. As the game progressed, a lovely steal by Polito marked the second goal for Dubai. Polito won the ball from the throw-in and strolled with the ball to Dubai’s end to make it 2-1 for King Power to close the chukker.

King Power gold cup

The game progressed in the second chukker with Castagnola brothers paving the way to an all-out attack for Team Dubai. Scoring three goals in the chukker, the brothers helped Dubai keep a steady lead in after the second chukker. VS King Power retaliated the goals with a fantastic offense led by Pieres. The score at half time was 6-4 in favor of Dubai. The massive crowd went out to tread-in, so large in fact that the commentators’ cries for them to return to their seats were swamped by the excited spectators’ comments. With the fourth chukker underway, a fantastic set piece by Polito Pieres to assist Zubia marked the 11th goal of the day, in favor of VS King Power. The score was leveled at 6-6 when two back to back goals in favor of King Power by Polito Pieres and Top Srivaddhnaprabha winded up the chukker at 8 - 6 in favor of King Power

King Power gold cup

The game progressed with VS King Power scoring a handful of goals in the early minutes to take the score to 10-7 in favor of the team. Polito Pieres scored from a 60-yard penalty and provided a great lead to VS King Power. Team Dubai, getting past King Power’s defense scored a goal to wind up the chukker at 11 - 8. The final chukker saw Dubai dominating the game completely as they scored 3 goals to level the scoreboard in no time. The excitement amongst the crowd was palpable. The score was 11-11 when Polito Pieres scored a goal in the final seconds from the throw in to put Team King Power in the lead. The score was 12-11 in favor of VS King Power when a fantastic attempt to score by Dubai was converted into a goal to drag the match to the extra chukker. The extra chukker saw Team Dubai marching towards the goal with Camilo Castagnola sprinting towards the goal. A through ball by Marcos di Paola towards Camilo saw him taking a giant leap towards the goal to smash the ball between the goalposts to score the winning goal for his team. Team Dubai won the 2019 edition of the King Power Gold Cup