Vikings can't invade the Tyro prizegiving at Cowdray
In the first final of Cowdray Park Polo Club's season, Cowdray Vikings met Gardenvale in the 12-goal Tyro Cup.
Lila Pearson’s Cowdray Vikings team had Pearson at No1, her son George (two goals) at two, Ralph Richardson (three goals) at three and his brother Jack (seven goals) at back.
Patron of Gardenvale Shane Finemore, playing off -1, was joined by Will Harper (one goal) at two, Matt Perry (five goals) at three and England captain James Beim (seven goals) at back.
First to score were Gardenvale with a goal from Beim, quickly followed by a neat goal from 15-year old Harper taking Finemore’s side into a 2-0 lead. But the Richardson brothers soon retaliated with a super goal by Jack Richardson and a nifty pick-up by Ralph Richardson which saw him run ahead of the field all the way through the goal posts to equalise for Cowdray Vikings by the end of the first chukka.
Chukka two saw another splendid goal from Ralph Richardson, one from Beim and another from Jack Richardson resulting in a narrow 4-3 lead for Vikings by half-time.
Following the tread-in there was plenty of flowing end-to-end polo but only Gardenvale were lucky enough to get numbers on the scoreboard, ending chukka three with a 5-4 lead.
In the final chukka, a steal from Beim by Jack Richardson enabled him to pass the ball to George Pearson who steered the ball between the posts to make it 5-5.
Gardenvale were awarded a 30-yard penalty which Beim saw through to take back the lead once more. Back came Vikings with another super goal from George Pearson to make it 6-6.
With less than a minute left, Harper spotted a loose ball, pounced on it and sent a beauty between the posts to seal a 7-6 victory for Gardenvale.
The stunning trophy was presented by Sheldon Withers to a delighted Shane Finemore, winning the Tyro Cup for a second year running.