BLOOM BRITISH LADIES OPEN POLO 2013 CHAMPIONSHIP
By Liz Higgins Cowdray Park Polo Club
Lila Pearson’s Cowdray Vikings made it through to the Final of the BLOOM British Ladies Open Polo Championship to face Jo Stuart’s Los Hamblinos on Saturday 20th July.
Playing alongside Lila in the Cowdray Vikings side was Louisa Evans, 0 goals, Hazel Jackson, 1 goal, and 2 goal Argentine player Lia Salvo. The 3 goal team received a half goal advantage on the scoreboard against Los Hamblinos’ team handicap of 4 goals, with Marianela Castagnola, 2 goals, Rose Ross, 2 goals, and Lucy Taylor, 1 goal, completing Jo Stuart’s team.
In a pacey and exciting match, first to score was Louisa Evans with a bold field goal for Cowdray Vikings. Lucy Taylor was next to snatch up a loose ball and carry it off without opposition down the field for Los Hamblinos’ first goal. A penalty saw Cowdray Vikings in the lead at 2½-1 by the end of the first chukka. The second chukka saw goals from Lucy Taylor and Lia Salvo before a scrum in front of the Vikings’ goal resulted in a penalty shot for Los Hamblinos which Castagnola shot through the posts to bring her side within half a goal of Cowdray Vikings.
Following the tread-in, Los Hamblinos were rewarded them with goals from Marianela Castagnola and Lucy Taylor to take their side into the lead for the first time, but Salvo scored from a penalty and a terrific field goal to take Cowdray Vikings ahead once again, the chukka closing at 5½-5 in their favour.
The fourth chukka opened with an amazing run by Salvo and the ball niftily picked up by Louisa Evans who popped it between the posts to take Cowdray Vikings further ahead 6½-5. A great pick-up by Lucy Taylor saw her galloping down the field and passing to her Patron who tapped the ball through to close the gap once more. A foul on Hazel Jackson enabled Lia Salvo to score from a penalty again for the Vikings. Within a minute Castagnola had also capitalized on a 30 yard awarded to Los Hamblinos. With two minutes to go and the score at 7½-7 in favour of Cowdray Vikings, Hazel Jackson took possession of the ball and raced away with it to score from an excellent cut shot giving Cowdray Vikings an 8½-7 in the 2013 BLOOM British Ladies Open Championship.
Enzo Vizone for sponsors BLOOM London Dry Gin presented the silver salver to Lila Pearson of Cowdray Vikings. The players received a clutch of prizes which included a bottle of BLOOM Gin and gifts of Udo’s Oil, the ultimate oil blend for glowing skin. Lia Salvo was voted Most Valuable Player of the match and was presented with a beautiful bouquet from The Real Flower Company. The award for Best Playing Pony went to Lila Pearson’s ‘Joe’ whose groom Jackie Wright has been with the Cowdray family for 40 years.