LAHORE-Pebble Breakers outran Master Paints (Black) by 7-5 ½ to lift the Emporium Mall Punjab Polo Cup played here at the Lahore Polo Club ground on Saturday.

Saqib Khan Khakwani was hero of the final as he hammered a hat-trick and was declared man of the match while his teammate Guy Gibrat also slammed a hat-trick and Mohsin Atta Khan Khosa hit one. From the losing side, Andres Crispo struck three and Ahmed Ali Tiwana two.

The match started with Master Paints having half goal handicap advantage and with Guy Gibrat’s goal off 30-yard penalty hit, Pebble Breakers take 1-½ lead. The first part of the second chukker was then dominated by Master Paints as they struck two with Andres Crispo and Ahmed Tiwana scoring one goal each to make give their team 2½-1 edge. Pebble Breakers them staged a strong comeback and scored two back-to-back goals – one each was struck by Gibrat and Saqib – to have 3-2 ½ .

Three tremendous goals from Pebble Breakers – two by Saqib and one Mohsin Khosa - helped them take an unbeatable 6-2½ lead. Master Paints although bounced back well in the fourth chukker and hammered three goals to take 6-5½ lead but one goal was also scored by Pebble Breakers to finish the match having 7-5½ lead. Howard George Smith and Timothy John Bown supervised the match as chief guest.

Talking to this scribe, man of the match Saqib Khakwani said: “We played the final with proper planning, which worked well as we put Master Paints under pressure right from the start and maintained it till the end, which helped us win the prestigious trophy. Our team is in good shape and we are geared up for the National Open Polo, the premier polo tournament of the country. We will give our best to win this premier title as well.”

Governor Punjab Rafiq Rajwana graced the final as chief guest while Nishat Group chairman Mian Mansha was guest of honour. Also present on the occasion were LPC President Irfan Ali Hyder, executive committee members, their families and a large number of polo lovers. In the end, the chief guest distributed shields and trophies among the winners and top performers.

In the subsidiary final, Barry's beat Newage/Master Paints by 6-3. All the players contributed equally in Barry's triumph as Raja Samiullah, George Meyrick and Hamza Mawaz Khan slammed two goals each. From the losing side, all the three goals came from Juan Cruz Losada.

Raja Samiullah opened the Barry's account with a fantastic field goal, giving his team 1-0 edge. The next chukker saw tremendous two goals from George Meyrick to strengthen Barry's lead to 3-0. Losada then hit one to reduce the margin to 3-1. 

Losada then struck another goal to further reduce the deficit to 3-2. Hamza then enhanced Barry's lead to 4-2. Losada added one more to make it 4-3. The fourth and conclusive chukker was all about Barry’s as they pumped in two tremendous goals to finish that match at 6-3.




Governor Punjab Rafiq Rajwana, along with Mian Mansha, gives away trophy to winning team Pebble Breakers.–Staff Photo