USPA Eastern Challenge – La Indiana vs Dutta Corp
Sunday’s are for polo, we all know that. This past Sunday I headed up to Wellington to watch friends play against each other at Grand Champions Polo Club (where I had my first polo lessons).
Playing for the final of the USPA Eastern Challenge was:
13 goal team Dutta Corp, with Tim and Timmy Dutta, Kris Kampsen and Piki Alberdi
17 goal team La Indiana/Clearwater, Chip Campbell, Michael Bickford, Ezequiel (Gallego) Ferrario Martinez and Jeff Hall.
I had a hard time figuring out who to cheer for, as on the La Indiana team Michael Bickford being the person who introduced me to polo 6,5 years ago, is my oldest friend in polo and Gallego was just playing in Dubai for the season I was there (those of you who follow me on snapchat saw his little son many times, Rufino is the cutest and happiest little baby, so whenever I saw him I practically kidnapped him, haha) and then Dutta Corp’s Tim and Timmy Dutta are also friends of mine, so I decided to stay impartial and cheer for everyone 🙂
The Grand Champions Polo Club is such a friendly place, open to everyone and you are sure to find the usual crowd hanging out in the field side tents. Melissa and Marc Ganzi have done a great job in opening up their polo club/home to the public, with free entries and you will even find sandwiches and a cooler with water and soda. I mean how nice and welcoming is that?
The match was an exciting one of 6 chukkers, with Dutta Corp starting ahead with 4 goals on handicap.
Game report extract by Sharon Robb:
Dutta Corp, coming off its spring season-opening victory in the Santa Rita Abierto, led 5-1 after the opening chukker. Clearwater took advantage of Dutta Corp penalties in the second chukker to score four goals including two on penalties, to cut its deficit to one (6-5). Kampsen scored from the field and Bickford converted a penalty shot in the third chukker with Dutta Corp still holding a one-goal lead for a 7-6 halftime advantage.
In the second half, Clearwater found its offensive attack behind Fernandez, who was unstoppable in the final three chukkers. Clearwater outscored Dutta Corp 5-0 in the fourth and fifth chukkers for an 11-8 lead. Tim Dutta closed the gap with two goals in the final chukker but Dutta Corp was unable to get any closer
Bickford had five goals and Campbell had one. For Dutta Corp, Timmy Dutta, 15, the youngest player in the final, led scoring with four goals. Kampsen and Alberdi each had one.
The Prize giving was lead by comedian Pauly Shore, who really did give us a laugh and made it one of the most entertaining prize-giving ceremonies I have witnessed. The best part was when he realized he had given trophies to the runners up and said “What? These guys are the losers? Give me back those trophies.” and actually started to take back the trophies. All in good fun though.
After catching up and talking about summer plans it was time to head out and towards IPC for the FIP Zone A Playoffs.