King Power Foxes pulled off British polo’s big double by adding the Jaeger-LeCoultre Gold Cup at Cowdray Park on July 19 to their victory earlier in the season in the Cartier Queen’s Cup at Guards. They beat UAE by 14 goals to eight and remain unbeaten for the 2015 season.
The mighty 10-goal Argentinian brothers Facundo and Gonzalito Pieres scored 10 of King Power Foxes goals between them, but young English player Hugo Lewis — playing in his first Gold Cup, aged 20 — put two on the board, including the final goal after a brilliant, pitch-long gallop towards the posts.
King Power Foxes, who have only been on the British high-goal polo scene for two years, are backed by Thai duty-free magnate Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha, who also owns Leicester City Football Club. His son Aiyawatt, known as “Top”, plays the number one position in the team — and scored two goals in this swelteringly hot final in front of a crowd of 15,000.
Unfortunately, Top suffered a fall in the fourth chukka and was unable to continue playing, so his place was taken by another young Brit, Kian Hall.
Peter McCormack, team manager of King Power Foxes, said: “Everybody said we had the toughest match today, but with the belief and the pride of the performance we put in, we knew that we could do this.”
King Power Foxes had given Zacara a drubbing, 15-9, in the semi-finals three days earlier, while UAE — led by 10-goal Argentinian player Pablo MacDonough — had beaten Apes Hill by 14 goals to eight.
Last year’s Gold Cup winners, Dubai, experienced a shock defeat in the quarter finals by Zacara.
Image by Joan Wakeham/REX Shutterstock