The Nation, Published on September 19
Hua Hin, September 18, 2003
It was an afternoon of shock and awe at yesterday's King's Cup Elephant Polo Tournament with both of the eagerly anticipated matches ending in nail-biting turnaround victories for the underdogs.
The Mercedes Benz (Thailand) goal-scoring machine, captained by Oliver Winter, looked perilously close to defeat at the hands of the top-seeded Chivas Regal team at the end of the first chukka of the afternoon's first game.
Chivas' James Manclark and Angad Kalaan hogged the ball throughout the chukka, mercilessly tormenting the Mercedes Benz goal. But in a stunning second-chukka turnaround, Winter and the Goetz brothers went into overdrive and scored 9 goals in quick succession to earn a 12-9 win over the skilful Chivas team.
In the afternoon's second game, Britain's King's Royal Hussars, sponsored by Thai Airways, looked decidedly rattled after an inspirational first chukka dominated by the Tickle and the Ivories' Steve Asher, who knocked the ball relentlessly over the Hussar's goal line, leaving the Brits 7-1 down.
Mid-game celebrations were tempered by thoughts of the earlier match's turnaround. This proved to be a wise move as the second chukka was a veritable charge of the light brigade. Hussars' Captain Alex Michael dominated the field with an 8-goal salvo to end the match 9-7 to the Hussars.
In the day's earlier matches, PricewaterhouseCoopers WEPA Nepal, captained by Kristjan Edwards, romped to a 5-2 victory over second-seeds Mullis Capital.
American Express (Thailand) scooped a narrow 6-4 win over the Screwless Tuskers, who, as has become their trademark, played a solid second chukka.
Nokia (Thailand) under the expert leadership of Aktanai Chutinthanond, beat the Thaigem.com Jewels 7-3 despite a sterling effort from Jewels captain Margie McDougal. And, in a battle of the booze, Sandalford Winery cruised to a 12-0 victory over Bangkok's Q Bar.
The Anantara Resort and Spa is hosting the 2003 King's Cup Elephant Polo Tournament from September 16th to 21st.