LAHORE-Newage Cables/Master Paints clinched the coveted trophy after beating Diamond Paints by 11-10 in the final of the 1st President of Pakistan National Open Polo Championship 2022 sponsored by MidCity here at the Jinnah Polo Fields on Sunday.

Gonzalo Deltour emerged as hero of the day as he displayed marvellous mallet and pony work and contributed with excellent eight goals while Vieri Antinori banged in a brace and Alman Jalil Azam scored one goal. For Diamond Paints, Max Charlton though played well and fired in five goals while Ahmed Ali Tiwana cracked a quartet and Mir Shoaib Ahmed stuck one goal but their efforts proved futile in the end.

Both the sides played extremely well against each other in the nail-biting title clash and matched fire-with-fire till the end as the score at the end of the fifth chukker the score was level at 10-10. The match was then decided in the sudden death sixth chukker, where both the teams played extremely well but Gonzalo Deltour played extraordinary polo in the crucial sudden death chukker and smashed in a superb match-winning goal to guide Newage Cables/Master Paints to a well-deserving 11-10 title victory.

On the other hand, Remounts players held their nerves in the seventh chukker to claim the third position by beating Master Paints by a narrow margin of 10-9. Simon Prado was star of the day for Remounts as he smashed in superb six goals while Nico Roberts hammered a week of goals and ALD Imran Shahid struck one goal. For Master Paints, Marcos Panelo cracked a classic quartet while Martin Carlos and Bilal Haye banged in a brace each and Sufi Muhammad Haroon scored one goal.

Governor Punjab Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar graced the final as chief guest and gave away prizes and shields to the winners and top performers. Other prominent ones present on the occasion were former Governor Punjab Lt Gen (R) Khalid Maqbool, Pakistan Polo Association Secretary Lt Col Ayaz, JPF President Lt Col (R) Shoaib Aftab, Secretary Maj (R) Baber Mahboob Awan, players and their families and polo enthusiasts.

At the prize distribution ceremony after the thrilling final, Pakistan Olympic Association (POA) member and former five-goal player Syed Shahid Ali Shah was awarded the life time achievement award while Usman Aziz Anwar was awarded the best player in -2-0 category, in 0-2 category, Imran Shahid was named the best player, in 2-4 category, Raja Temur Nadeem emerged as the best player.

The Pakistan’s best player award was claimed by Hissam Ali Hyder, the best foreign player award was clinched by Gonzalo Deltour of Newage Cables/Master Paints, the best foreign polo pony award was claimed by Sufi Haroon’s pony and the best local breed pony award was lifted by local pony of Mona Depot and the award was received by Brig Muhammad Naeem.

In the end, JPF President Lt Col (R) Shoaib Aftab thanked Governor Punjab Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar, sponsors MidCity Housing, Suzuki Motors, Askari Bank and DHA and presented then a souvenir each.