Desert Palm ‘A’ retain President’s Polo Cup

The closely fought five session final saw Desert Palm (A) opening the account with a 40 yards penalty by leading scorer Santiago, two minutes after the game began.

By Kt Report

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Published: Mon 19 Jan 2015, 1:17 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 8:34 PM

A fast break is challenged strongly during the thrilling title clash between Desert Palm ‘A’ and the Saudi Zidane’s Team. — Supplied photo

Dubai — The UAE’s Desert Palm ‘A’ won the 15th edition of the HH President of the UAE Polo Cup with a narrow 10-9 triumph in the title clash against the Saudi Zidane’s Team on Friday night.

The closely fought five session final saw Desert Palm (A) opening the account with a 40 yards penalty by leading scorer Santiago, two minutes after the game began.

The game was played in a very defensive manner by both sides initially, especially by Desert Palm mainly to check Zidane’s Argentine star Pablo who was the event’s top scorer with six goals, three of which were from penalties.

Rashid Al Bawardi, the leading Desert Palm player along with Santiago, Martin Vaillant and Vakndo gave the winners the edge after Saudi Zidane, led 5-2 at half time. Desert Palm managed to get back into the game through an equaliser making it 7-7 at the end of the fourth outing.

The fifth period was very exciting, as the Desert Palm team grew ‘wings’ and took on Zidane to head the proceedings 10-7, but Zidane fought back and scored two fast goals to cut down the score to 9-10. However, Desert Palm (A) built a strong defensive line afterwards in the dying minutes to claim their second straight title.

Third place went to the Bin Drai Team when they beat the Abu Dhabi Polo Team 12-7 in the bronze playoff.

The week-long championship that witnessed strong UAE and Saudi Arabia lineups taking part, was held at the Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club under the patronage of Shaikh Falah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Club chairman.

The top dignitaries who were present for the summit round included Shaikh Mohammed bin Khalifa bin Sultan bin Shakhboot Al Nahyan; Shaikh Tahnoon bin Mohammed bin Khalid Al Nahyan; Saeed bin Houfan Al Mansouri, the Club vice-chairman; Ahmed Al Nuaimi, managing director of the club and other guests.

The large turnout cheered the UAE’s Desert Palm ‘A’ team all through and celebrated their victory in style. The closing ceremony also saw participants from the Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Sports and Fitness Programme, while the Abu Dhabi Country Club had a gym set up at one corner of the field. The Abu Dhabi Police participated with the latest security cars, as well as provided information about the security education department, and above all the display of  their well the trained K-9 squad.

sports@khaleejtimes.com

 



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