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Date: Tuesday, September 4, 2018
England embarked on its 26th campaign against USA on Saturday, September 1 for the annual Labor Day Weekend challenge in the NBC10 Newport International Polo Series 27, presented by BMW. Jet-lag, followed by an all-night tour of the Newport social scene left the England players with thick heads that even a builder's tea couldn't clear.
Representing England were Matt Jones at #1, Garrie Renucci at #2, Stephen O'Kane at #3, and Jimmy Wood at #4.
USA fielded Minnie Keating in the #1 position, Michel Nseir at #2, Heather Souto at #3, and Rory Torrey at #4.
The English team was still shaking off the previous night's follies as the umpires threw the ball in. Immediately, Torrey went on the attack for USA to handily win the first goal. Souto quickly followed to close the first chukker 2-0. Torrey carried the momentum into the second chukker with a neat penalty conversion, followed by two goals from Souto in regulation play. As half-time closed in, England finally got in the game. Wood made two penalty conversion to put England on the board, but Torrey made a conversion of his own to sweep the first half 6-2.
A strong thrust by Souto opened the second half with USA up 7-2. Wood won a charge to goal for the first point by England scored in regulation play, but Keating closed the chukker with another goal for USA. England appeared to be snookered as the fourth chukker started, but then, Wood made an impressive comeback, scoring three goals to USA's one, drawing nearer, 6-9 in favor of USA. England came alive in the final chukker with goals by Wood and Renucci that closed the gap within one point of USA. Then, Torrey took one back to widen the margin once again. O'Kane managed one more point as the clock ran down, coming in too late to put a tied game within reach. USA reclaimed the silver, 10-9.
During the match, a lucky winner took home a magnum of Veuve Clicquot champagne in the weekly door prize drawing, and the Stella Artois Tailgate Prize went to a lively gathering sporting colors to cheer on both teams and a gilded equine centerpiece that set the party apart from the crowd. Specialty vendors and concessionaires in the Vendor & Hospitality villages around the polo grounds served up the grilled fare, chilled fare, seafare, jewelry, sunglasses, cutlery, wine sampling, polo team gear and more.
The match concluded with the Veuve Clicquot Champagne Toast & Trophy Presentation, as well as an autograph signing to meet the players. The 1992 USA vs. England Trophy was presented by England Team Host Ron Flemming and Lord Mayor of Portsmouth, UK Lee Mason.
Dating back more than 130 years in Newport, the polo matches are one of Newport’s grandest & most popular traditions, a living legacy from the Gilded Age, and open to the public. Audiences of several thousand spectators enjoy the contests against international teams, as well as teams representing major US cities, playing against the home team every Sat, June thru Sept. at 5 PM / 4 PM in Sept.
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This is the 27th season of Newport International Polo Series, which has hosted teams from over 30 nations including, Ireland, Germany, Spain, England, Argentina, France, Egypt, India, Australia, Costa Rica, Ghana, Canada, Chile, Jamaica, Nigeria, Portugal, New Zealand, Barbados, Scotland, South Africa, Hungary, Dominican Republic, Netherlands, Kenya, Brazil, China, Italy, Mexico, Sweden, Singapore, Monaco, Morocco, and Peru.
Minutes from downtown Newport, the International Polo Grounds are located at historic Glen Farm, 250 Linden Lane (off of Rte. 138) in Portsmouth, RI. This bucolic setting is the last 100 acres of what was once a 700-acre manorial farm whose settlement dates back to the 1600's. Its classical stone barns from the Gilded Age and its park-like grounds were rehabilitated by polo series founder, Dan Keating, and thrive today as an equestrian & community recreational property, and home of the Polo Series.
The Newport International Polo Series is proud to present its 2018 sponsors including NBC - 10, BMW, Gallo Thomas Insurance, Brahmin, Veuve Clicquot, Grace Hotels, The Chanler, Hotel Viking, Gurney's Newport Resort & Marina, Vanderbilt International Properties, Clarke Cooke House, Flint & Flame, Stella Artois, Rockstar Limo, Atria Senior Living, Modern Luxury/Boston Common, Newport Daily News, McGrath Clambakes, Goslings Rum, Where Boston, Equine Journal, Classical 95.9 WCRI and promotional partners including The Preservation Society of Newport, Newport Helicopter Tours, America's Cup Charters, International Tennis Hall of Fame, Island Surf and Sport, The Cocktail Guru, and Scooter World. “Our sponsors have been with us since the beginning. Without their support, the Series would not be as extensive as it is,” explains Dan Keating, Polo Series founder.
There's no sport like polo. Be a part of it! Newport Polo hosts the Newport International Polo Series 27, and is the home of America's first polo club, est. in 1876, offering public exhibition matches, polo club member services for grass & arena polo, and polo instruction year-round; founding member of the United States Polo Association,