Chestertons Polo in the Park 2016 Day 1
Awakeconbal Team South Africa Reign Supreme on International Friday at Chestertons Polo in the Park
Crowds from all over London poured in to Hurlingham Park as the action kicked off for the first day of Chestertons Polo in the Park 2016.
Renowned for its world-class polo in the heart of the city, decadent food and drink offerings, including the Champagne Lanson Garden and the ever popular Mahiki bar. Chestertons Polo in the Park yet again exceeded expectations with a day bursting with entertainment and thrilling polo clashes.
In-between the action, spectators were treated to the debut of The Great Polo Food Festival, serving gastronomic delights from London’s most desirable food destinations such as HIX, Maze Grill, Smokestak amongst many others. Fans were also able to enjoy the luxurious shopping village from enviable brands such as Taylor Morris and browsing the latest trends from Fairfax & Favor and ISWAI.
The highlight of the opening day of Chestertons Polo in the Park was undoubtedly the City AM International match. An eruption of noise greeted the players as they rode out to the colosseum of polo that is Hurlingham Park. Steeped in history, as the spiritual home of polo, until last year an England team had not played an international match at the South-West London venue since 1939.
Against fierce sporting rivals, AwakeConBal Team South Africa, ICM Capital Team England featuring Jack Richardson, George Meyrick and Hugo Lewis were up against it from the start. A scintillating opening chukka from AwakeConBal Team South Africa gave them a lead that they would never relinquish. George Meyrick tried his hardest to cut the deficit in the final quarter with a two-point goal but Derreck Bratley’s team held on for an 8:6 victory to lift the heralded Olympic trophy.
“We are ecstatic to win the City AM International match especially against a quality opposition like ICM Capital Team England, the atmosphere was unbelievable!’” said winning captain Derreck Bratley.
International Friday at Chestertons Polo in the Park saw three high-octane matches kick off the action as six cities from around the globe began their quest for the coveted Chestertons Polo in the Park trophy.
Played under unique City Polo rules that make for a faster game of Polo, Jnan Amar Polo Club Team Marrakech and Navigant Team New York kicked off the action with a Champagne Lanson perfect start, the only way to kick off proceedings at Chestertons Polo in the Park.
Jnan Amar Polo Club Team Marrakech made their intentions clear from the outset as Jack Richardson and Rhys Cole’s skills helped Pete Webb score a first chukka hat-trick including a goal scored from almost inside the MINT bar to help his side to a 5:3 victory.
“It was great fun being out there and start with a win. This year at Chestertons Polo in the Park there seems to be a great atmosphere and really good support from all the sponsors and people in the crowd”, said Jnan Amar Polo Club Team Marrakech’s, Jack Richardson after the victory.
Defending champions, Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park Team Hong Kong, in the absence of injured captain Jamie Morrison, started like true champions against Air Europa Team Buenos Aires.
A sublime volley from Sebastian Dawnay was the highlight of the first chukka as he rode with adrenaline pumping in front of the Mahiki bar, Europe’s longest outdoor bar. Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park Team Hong Kong were ultimately victorious and look one of the teams to beat this year.
The home crowd roared from the outset as MINT Team London cantered on to the hallowed Hurlingham turf for their opening match against Argentex Team Dubai led by Mohammed Al Habtoor. England International, Malcolm Borwick, scored the first two-point goal of Chestertons Polo in the Park 2016, a special city-polo rule. With fellow countrymen George Spencer-Churchill parading his much vaunted power and tenacity, MINT Team London held on to record a slender victory by six goals to five.