Polo Players Edition

AUG 2018

Polo Players' Edition is the official publication of the U.S. Polo Association. Dedicated to the sport of polo, it features player profiles, game strategy, horse care, playing tips, polo club news and tournament results.

Issue link: https://polo.epubxp.com/i/1005812

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Page 41 of 67

40 POLO P L A Y E R S E D I T I O N P O L O I N T H E P A M P A S BY ERNESTO RODRIGUEZ FEELS LIKE HOME S unday, June 10 was not, as usually happens in Rosario, a soccer day par excellence. In Rosario, the third largest city in Argentina, there was no mention of the duels between Rosario Central and Newell's Old Boys—the two main teams—or the achievements of Lionel Messi—the prodigal son—in Barcelona. Instead, they gave way to another of Rosario's pride: the Copa Día de la Bandera (Flag Day Cup), the traditional polo tournament, for quartets of up to 20 goals, that coincides with the national celebration of the death of Manuel Belgrano, the creator of the national flag, on the outskirts of this city located 190 miles from Buenos Aires. Faithful to its tradition, dating back to 1965, the Jockey Club of Rosario opened its doors to welcome more than a thousand people on the final day of a contest that, thanks to the weather's help, could celebrate its three qualifying days as planned on Thursday, June 7. "This year the good weather helped. We came from a couple of years with a lot of rain, flooded fields and having to ask for help from neighbors to comply with the schedule. Luckily, someone from heaven gave us a hand this time," acknowledged Nicolás San Román, president of the Polo Subcommittee, to Polo Players' Edition. After playing the eight qualifying matches, the brackets were determined as the order to celebrate the three finals for the usual trophies. The clash that opened that cold morning was for the Estímulo Héctor Laborde Cup, reserved for the teams that had been third in their respective groups. And there was a home team celebration since Jockey Club Rosario Escorihuela Gascón (Andrés Orlandini, 1; Magín Burgos, 2; Marcos Rooney, 6; Agustín Canale, 6) took the prize over La Rinconada (Héctor Paladini, 0; José Godoy, 2; Guillermo Cavanagh, 6; Eduardo Venturino, 5). The locals had to suffer a lot because they gave up two handicap goals to start the match and had to overcome that deficit in the six scheduled chukkers. Finally, they equaled in the closing seconds of the last period 10-all, but La Rinconada generated a foul that forced a 40-yard penalty to be shot in overtime. It was not converted and after a couple of plays against JC's goal, a counterattack was generated leading to Agustín Canale converting the Golden Goal. "I thought we lost when they called the foul against us at the last bell. We had no desire to change horses. But when we saw that they did not score, we clenched our teeth and defended to death. And the retaliation went OK," explained the scorer. On the same Eduardo Uranga field, named after one of the founders of this tournament, Los Sauces (Milagros Sánchez, 1: Juan Carlos Sánchez, 2; Ezequiel Sánchez, 5; Rodrigo Sánchez, 4) and Los Pingos del Taita (Federico Giambastiani, 0: Juan Zucco, 2; Valerio Zubiaurre, 8; Pablo Llorente, 6) went to battle. Los Sauces is a family team (Juan Carlos is the father of Milagros and Ezequiel and uncle of Rodrigo) and its members did not hesitate to travel 350 miles from Concarán, the city in San Luis in which they are settled, to Rosario, crossing three provinces to be present, reiterating what they have done this year in other major events such as the Argentine Interior Championship with Handicap and the Lolo Castagnola wins sixth Flag Day Cup title La Natividad's Juan Guerrero, Bartolomé "Lolo" Castagnola, Felipe Dabas and Alfredo Cappella Barabucci won the Flag Day Cup. CLICK POLO

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