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Bardon Battle for Gold in La Martina Final 23rd May 2017

Matias Machado shoots winner in extra time in Club's first 15-goal final of the season

A golden goal from The Polo Magazine’s Man of the Match Matias Machado ensured Bardon had an unbeaten run in the 15-goal La Martina Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother Centenary Trophy. A delighted patron, Andras Tombor, received the trophy from Sarah Byfield Riches, head of design at London College of Fashion and one of La Martina’s Royal Box guests on finals day.

Bardon had dominated the early part of this final against Lord Rothermere’s Ferne Park and were 6-2 up in the third chukka. However what could have been a fast and flowing game – featuring some great battles between Machado and Alejo de Tarenco Stirling versus Joaquin Pittaluga – was marred by too many penalties. And it was these that brought Ferne Park very much back into the game in the final two chukkas. They had closed the gap to 6-4 at the end of the third and then Pittaluga converted two further goals in the fourth. The scores were now 6-6 and extra time loomed.

Not surprisingly, tensions were running high in the extra, fifth chukka and it seemed that the advantage was with Ferne Park, with the ball lying perilously close to Bardon’s goal. But Machado had other ideas and picking up a loose ball, ran down The Queen’s Ground to score and win the match, mounted on the fast-paced Vegas. This 14-year-old mare was later rewarded with the Polo Times Best Playing Pony prize.

Tombor confirmed after the match presentations that the team had not changed tactics, despite Ferne Park’s late rally. “We just tried to be as many players as possible on the field,” he said. “I marked Josh Cork whenever he had the ball and he is a very talented player.

“We are playing more 15 and some 18-goal this season, but this tournament has been good fun. We played three out of our four games here on The Queen’s Ground which has been amazing and to win all of our matches was brilliant. “

Fourteen teams had entered this 15-goal tournament and a sub-final had been played earlier in the day. This featured Park Place and Four Quarters Black at Coworth Park. Andrey Borodin’s Park Place won this battle, defeating Romila Arber’s team 5-3.

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