HAVING spent the past year adorning the tables of the library in the public area of Blenheim Palace, The County Cup is set to return there as George Sunderland’s all-England Blenheim team beat Spencer McCarthy’s Emlor by the narrowest of margins, to win the coveted trophy by 9-9½.


Cirencester Polo Club

The County Cup

The first chukka was owned by Blenheim. They came out all guns blazing and increased their half-goal handicap start to 3½ with some solid penalty conversions by George Meyrick and a stolen run by Dave Allen. Nacho Gonzalez converted a penalty for Emlor to make it 3½ to 1 at the end of the first chukka.

Blenheim extended their lead in the second chukka to 5½ - 1 before a short back-hand from McCarthy didn’t clear the goal and was swiftily picked up by Ollie Cudmore and slotted through for a sixth Blenheim field goal.

Arguably the goal of the game, however, came from George Meyrick who raced past several red Emlor shirts before releasing a huge shot bang on target to make it 7½ - 3.

The game was by no means as one-sided as the score suggested, however, and some great goals from Manolo Fernandez-Llorente brought the teams closer together and it became a nail-biting finish.

But the clock was against Emlor and at 9 - 9½ Blenheim were relieved to hear the bell sound.

After four attempts Cudmore was delighted to eventually get his hands on the trophy and Dave Allen was delighted to win the trophy for the fourth time.

Cadenza Juniors then went on to beat Creed Polo in the subsidiary to take the Neil Haig Trophy.