LAHORE - Samba Bank and Guard Group/Master Paints qualified for the main final of the Pakistan Polo Cup 2018-19 sponsored by Guard Group and Samba Bank after registering victories in their respective matches played here at Lahore Polo Club ground on Friday.

While Olympia and PBG/Remounts made way to the subsidiary final to be played on Sunday at 2:00 pm. In the first match of the day, Samba Bank edged past Polo D Sufi by 5-4½. From Samba Bank, Shah Shamyl Alam and Hissam Ali Hyder banged in a brace each while Mir Shoaib Ahmed converted a goal. From Polo D Sufi, which had half goal handicap advantage, Ahmed Ali Tiwana thwarted two goals while Sufi Haroon and Raja Temur Nadeem contributed with one goal apiece.

The highly-charged first chukker saw both the sides scoring two goals each to square the things at 2-2. Polo D Sufi scored the opening goal through Sufi Haroon to take 1-0 which was equalized 1-1 by Samba Bank when Shah Shamyl converted a spot penalty. Polo D Sufi once again gained 2-1 lead through Ahmed Ali but Hissam Ali Hyder once again levelled the score at 2-2 by firing in a field goal.

Both the sides then played outstanding polo and matched the fire with fire as they added one goal each in the second and third chukkers to draw the score at 4-4. In the second chukker, Ahmed Ali first converted one for Polo D Sufi and Hissam for Samba to make it 3-3 and then Raja Temur once again gave 4-3 edge to Polo D Sufi which was soon equalized at 4-4 by Samba through Mir Shoaib’s field goal. In the fourth and last chukker, the only match-winning goal was hammered by hero of the match Shah Shamyl to guide his side to 5-4½ victory.

In the second match of the day, Hamza Mawaz Khan’s six-goal haul helped Guard Group/Master Paints rout Pakistan Air Force (PAF) by 11-8. Besides Hamza’s heroics, Taimoor Ali Malik’s magnificent hat-trick amused the spectators a lot while Saqib Khan Khakwani and Farooq Amin Sufi not only supported their teammates well but also contributed with one goal each. From PAF, which had two goals handicap advantage, Raja Mikael Sami, Raja Jalal Arslan and Nicolas Ruiz Guinazo slammed in two goals each.

PAF started the match with a field goal through Raja Mikael to take 1-0 lead but Guard Group/MP bounced back well by thwarting three goals – two by Hamza and one by Saqib - to take back 3-1 lead. Guard Group, in the second chukker, fired in four more goals to take a healthy 7-1 lead. Taimoor Malik’s hat-trick was highlight of the chukker while Sufi Farooq struck one. Nocolas hit one to finish the chukker at 7-2.

The third chukker was evenly poised as both the sides banged in a brace each to make it 9-4. For Guard Group, Hamza hit two while for PAF, Mikael and Jalal added one apiece. The fourth and last chukker was identical to the third one as both the teams hammered two goals each to make it 11-6. Hamza struck a brace while Jalal and Nicolas netted one goal each.