LAHORE, Feb 16 (APP):Master Paints Black and Pebble Breakers
qualified for the main final of the Hamdan Aibak Polo Cup 2019 after defeating their respective opponents here at Lahore Polo Club ground on Saturday.
In the first match of the day, Master Paints Black beat Barry’s
by 16-15. The eight chukker match began with Barry’s enjoying 7-5 lead.
But Master Paints Black were off to flying start as they hammered a hat-trick to pull back 8-7 lead. Ahmed Ali struck a brace and Raja Mikael one for Master Paints Black. Barry’s scored one goal through Bautista to make it 8-8 but Ahmed Ali added one more in Master Paints
Black tally to enhance their lead to 9½-8. Raja Sami finished the
chukker by firing in a field goal to reduce the margin to 9-9.
Barry’s started the sixth chukker by converting spot penalty to
take 10-9 lead but Master Paints Black banged in a brace through
one each by Raja Temur and Matia Vial Parez to get back 11-10 edge.
The highly-charged seventh chukker saw both the sides hammering three
goals each with Master Paints Black enjoying 14-13 lead. From Master
Paints Black, Ahmed Ali hit two goals and Matias one while from
Barry’s, Raja Sami contributed two and Bautista hit one.
The eighth and last chukker was evenly poised as both the teams
banged in two goals each. From Master Paints Black, Ahmed Ali and
Matias scored one goal apiece while from the losing side, Bautista
and Raja Sami converted one goal each, as Master Paints Black won
the match by 16-15. Nicolas Scortichini and Martin Jhon Henry
officiated the match as field umpires.
In the second match of the day, Pebble Breakers defeated Diamond Paints/Newage by a narrow margin of 8-7. Juan Cruz Losada and Saqib
Khan Khakwani displayed outstanding polo skills and techniques to steer their side to a thrilling victory. Losada fired in fabulous five goals while Saqib hammered a hat-trick. From the losing side, Salvador Ulloa scored a quartet while Hissam Ali Hyder, Mir Huzaifa Ahmed and Adnan
Jalil Azam contributed one goal apiece.
Diamond Paints/Newage opened their account with a field goal through Salvador to take 1-0 lead, which couldn’t last long as Pebble Breakers equalized the score 1-1, when Losada converted a 30-yard penalty. Pebble Breakers took early lead in the second chukker through Losada to take
2-1 lead, but Diamond Paints/Newage bounced back in great style by hammering a hat-trick – two by Salvador and one by Hissam – to take
back 4-2 lead.
Salvador continued his good show in the third chukker as well
as he fired in a field goal to further stretch their lead to 5-2.
Losada and Saqib then played exceptionally and slammed in one goal
each to reduce the margin to 5-4.
In the highly-charged fourth and last chukker, both the sides
fought really well and scored one goal after another. First Diamond Paints/Newage fired in a field goal through Mir Huzaifa to enhance
their lead to 6-4 but then Pebble Breakers fought back well and
smashed in hat-trick – two by Losada and one by Saqib to – to take
7-6, which couldn’t last long as Diamond Paints/Newage struck one
through Adnan Jalil to once again equalize the match at 7-7. It was anyone’s match as both the sides were trying to score the crucial
goal and it was Saqib Khan who smashed in a match-winning goal to
guide Pebble Breakers to 8-7 victory. Nicolas Scortichini and
Martin Jhon Henry were the field umpires.
Federal Minister Mohammad Hammad Azhar will grace the final as
chief guest while Hamdan CEO will be guest of honour. Lahore Polo
Club President Malik Atif Yar Tiwana, executive committee members,
members and their families and polo enthusiasts will also present
on the occasion to witness the enthralling final.