Polo Players Edition

FEB2019

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.

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POLO P L A Y E R S E D I T I O N 27 "The first year I thought it was a dream. This time it is a reality. And it's clear that this is unstoppable," exclaimed Nina Clarkin, the best female player on the planet. She was extremely happy after having won her second consecutive title in the Women's Argentine Open before a large number of people that populated Palermo's Field 2 in the warm-up to the 125th Argentine Open final. Her smile illuminated her face and made her forget the heat, the weariness and the nerves after playing a match defined with the last hit of the ball. As happened in 2017, the tournament brought together several of the best players on the planet. In the first edition, there were six teams, while in this one four sets were presented. For three of them, it was their second time competing: La Dolfina Brava (defending champion), El Overo Z7 UAE (which in the previous contest played as Ellerstina) and Santa María de Lobos (patron Dawn Laurel Jones presented a new lineup). And a newcomer, the All England Alegría-HPA 1875. The first day was held on Monday, Dec. 3, at the facilities the Argentine Polo Association has in Pilar—35 miles northwest of Buenos Aires. La Dolfina Brava defeated Alegría-HPA 1875 with great authority, 17-2, although the handicap difference between both quartets was only seven goals. The success of El Overo Z7 UAE against Santa María de Lobos was almost as wide, 17-3, with eight goals of handicap between them (32 to 24). In that match, Lía Salvo shined with 10 conversions. "The difference of experience between the two teams that we had played last year and the two formations that were presented now is very noticeable. If we played again in two weeks, surely the differences would be minor," said Clarkin (author of seven goals) after the matches. On the second date, Thursday, Dec. 6, also in Pilar, there were two extremely balanced games. In the initial game, Alegría-HPA 1875 achieved its first victory in the contest by edging Santa María de Lobos, 10-8, in a game the British dominated with the closure of the fourth chukker (9-3). In the last two periods, Santa María de Lobos reacted, thanks to the efficient hand of No. 1 Jones (best scorer of the match with five) but Alegría held on for the win. A while later, the 2017 finalists clashed. La Dolfina Brava managed the score in the two opening chukkers (4-3), but in the third, El Overo Z7 UAE changed the course to dominate the scoreboard entering the last period ahead, 9-7. In the final chukker, two goals from La Dolfina Brava forced overtime. Lía Salvo scored her seventh goal of the afternoon to give her team the ticket to the definition. F or the second consecutive year, La Dolfina Brava captured the Women's Argentine Open after defeating El Overo Z7 UAE on the last play of the final match celebrated in Palermo. By Ernesto Rodriguez • Photos by Sergio Llamera La Dolfina Brava's Milagros Fernández Araujo, Mía Cambiaso, Nina Clarkin and Candelaria Fernández Araujo won for the second year in a row.

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