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Barbados win polo series

Randy Bennett

Barbados win polo series

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Richard Gooding couldn’t remain in his saddle, but Sagicor Asset Management Barbados stayed in the driver’s seat to cop the inaugural Sagicor Asset Management Cup when the curtain came down on the series on Sunday evening.
Playing at the Lion Castle Polo Ground, St Thomas, the home team battled to a hard-fought 3-3 draw against Productive Business Solutions Brazil to take the three-match series 1-0, after drawing 4-4 in their first match and winning the second encounter 7-6.
Barbados made three changes from their winning team, with Steward Gill, Gooding and Teddy Williams taking to the field, along with the lone survivor of that squad, Alex Cole.
The Brazilian side of Lucia Junqueira, Fernando Junqueira, Marcos Junqueira and Laerte Meirelles remained unchanged from their two previous games, as they sought a much needed win to level the series and share the trophy.
And they didn’t get off to the best of starts, with Cole’s early first goal giving the Bajans the lead, much to the delight of the appreciative crowd.
Brazil responded soon after through the efforts of Meirelles, as the two teams ended the first chukka tied at 1-1.
Lucia, the lone female player on the field, then put Brazil ahead, but not before both Gooding and his pony fell as they tried to stop her from scoring.
Gooding would have his redemption soon after, however, tying the score at 2-2 halfway through the second chukka, before Cole’s second goal with a minute remaining in the period put Barbados in the ascendancy going into the half.
Once again Brazil would respond through the efforts of Meirelles, setting the stage for a thrilling finish.
In a frantic final chukka, both teams missed excellent opportunities to go ahead, with Meirelles’ goal-bound effort just inches away from crossing the goal posts, before Cole swept it off the line.
Gooding then wasted a perfect chance to give his side the lead, sending his shot wide with nothing but the goal posts to beat.
And then with Brazil’s final attack of the match, Williams cleared what had looked to be a sure goal from Meirelles off the line once again, as the scores ended tied for the second time in what proved to be an exciting and competitive series.