2020 GTBank Lagos Polo
Leighton Sao Polo, on Sunday edged Shoreline 9-8 to emerge champions of the Open Cup of the GTBank Lagos International Polo Tournament.
The finals, which have in attendance the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen. Tukur Buratai among the dignitaries, marked the end of the opening week of the prestigious 2020 Lagos polo fiesta.
The much anticipated final week pitching a record 20 teams is expected gallop off today with Low Cup and the prestigious Majekodunmi Cup titles up for grabs. There will also be two subsidiary cups, the Italian Ambassador’s Cup and the Independence Cup, to be contested for.
Both sides are +12 handicap for the Open Cup final and it was Leighton Sao Polo team formed by Bowale Jolaosho, Seyi Oyinlola, Martin Juaregui and Manuel Crespo took to a flying start with Argentine seven-year goaler Crespo netting twice before Ashraf Yahaya halved the deficit of a bumber-to-bumper five chukka match.
Fellow Argentine Pipi Greguoli +4 levelled the match with a sensational goal which brought the crowd to their feet but Crespo would not be outshined as he registered another goal.
Shoreline was completed by Adebayo Karim and Julio Santiago Estrada and they kept the pressure on their opponents all through but they eventually fell short losing 9-8.
In the preceding match, Khalifa Adams inspired Lagos Golden Alchemy to a 6-0 victory over Ibadan Eleyele to win the Silver Cup.
Alchemy, which also had Bilal Dantata, Sadiq Dantata and Haliru Suleiman, took over the driver’s seat right from the start of the first chukka, with Adams driving in a low shot. Suleiman also got his name on the score sheet before Adams got his second for a comfortable 3-0 second chukka lead.
Eleyele which had the quartet of Jide Balogun, Bola Adeyemi, Abdulmalik Bariki and Salisu Umar put on a great fight but they were dazzled by the all-round aggressiveness of the Lagos team who went on to score three more goals notably in the third chukka for a resounding victory.
Special Guest of Honour for the opening week finale, Buratai led other dignitaries to give out prizes for the winners and runners-up at colourful closing ceremony in Ikoyi, Lagos.
Lagos Lieghton Saopolo had on Saturday became the first team to win a major prize in ongoing tournament, defeating STL 9-8 in a tense final decided before a full house at the foremost Ribadu Road polo ground in Ikoyi .
The Sheyi Oyinlola and Bowale Jolaoso powered side that started with a spark, against their highly rated rivals Lagos STL scoring goals in the early minutes of the first chukka and led till the final chukka, to earn a hard-fought victory.
Oba of Lagos, His Royal Majesty Oba Rilwan Akiolu who was the Special Guest of Honour of the day, led other top dignitaries to present the prizes to the winners and runners-up at a brief prize presentation ceremony.