Kano’2017 Polo: Lin­tex, Al­mat, Fas Agro Sweep Top Lau­rels

Dan­tex, Keffi Ponys fin­ish high

Sunday Trust - - FEVER PITCH - Sto­ries By Ernest Ekpeny­ong

The pa­rade of Kings that spread ex­cite­ments across the country and be­yond came to a flour­ish­ing cli­max over the week­end, with teams from Abuja, La­gos, and host Kano, sweep­ing the four top prizes in an im­pres­sive cam­paign.

Over twenty teams from across the country clashed in the ten days of un­for­get­table polo ex­trav­a­ganza that of­fered a hand­ful of sub­sidiary prizes, mak­ing the polo event one of the rich­est and the most at­tended gal­lop­ing fi­esta in the country.

Show­cas­ing over 35 games of high class polo that kept the crowded stands per­ma­nently on its feet, the pres­ti­gious event lived up to its traditional pomp and pageantry both on and off the pitch.

By the time the bat­tle weary play­ers and horses make their way home, four new cham­pi­ons were added to the ex­clu­sive list of proud win­ners of the pres­ti­gious fi­esta.

The Emir of Kano Cup classic that brought down the cur­tain on the in­ter­na­tional polo fes­ti­val was a be­fit­ting cli­max to a hugely suc­cess­ful polo ex­trav­a­ganza, need­ing a toss to de­cide the cham­pion, after hard fight­ing Keffi Ponys bat­tled Lin­tex to a 6-6 thriller.

Both former cham­pi­ons had gal­loped off their cam­paign with 5-5 score draw in their open­ing game, send­ing the event’s big­gest polo ti­tle in Kano, the Emir of Kano Cup to cliff hang­ing win­ner-takes- all grand fi­nale.

Honourable Aliyu Wadada led his top fir­ing squad parad­ing top rated Bello Buba, Ibrahim Mo­hammed and Rabiu Mo­hammed in the firestorm final against Lin­tex, boost­ing Abba Dan­tata, Bashir Dan­tata, Idris Badamasi and Jamilu Mo­hammed.

With vis­i­bil­ity fast fading on Us­man Dan­tata Polo Ground venue of the fes­ti­val and both teams scor­ing six goals each by the end of the six chukka cracker, the or­ga­nizer had to de­cide the 2017 Kano polo cham­pion on toss that went in favour of Lin­tex.

‘We are never afraid of any chal­lenge no mat­ter how in­tim­i­dat­ing the op­po­si­tions look, be­cause we have all it takes to win,” re­vealed Lin­tex Cap­tain, Jamilu Mo­hammed. “Our thanks go to our teem­ing fans for urg­ing us on through­out the cam­paign and of course, to Kano Polo Club for host­ing such a big and ex­cit­ing tour­na­ment.”

The event’s sec­ond big­gest prize, Dan­tata Cup was snatched by the sen­sa­tional Mau­rice Ekpeny­ong pow­ered Al­mat Group Polo team who ex­tended their win­ning runs to five tour­na­ments.

Com­plete with Nura Suleiman, Idris Badamasi, their Pa­tron, Mau­rice and Fran­ciso Pun­cho Al­mat shocked four other experienced op­po­si­tions for their first Dan­tata Cup ti­tle.

Kano Dan­tex led by the Chair­man of Kano polo, Bashir Dan­tata who was play­ing his 40th con­sec­u­tive Kano polo tour­na­ment, fin­ished run­ners up edg­ing Ti­tan, Kano Terra and Port Har­court teams in the ace.

Other big win­ners in­clude Mur­tala Dankaka’s Fas Agro that added Sir Muham­madu Sanusi Cup to the Dan­gote Cup win, and La­gos Awolowo who bat­tle through a 2 team strong field, to win the MRS Cup.

The grand polo fes­ti­val was wit­nessed by the Emirs of Kano, Katsina, Daura, Bauchi, Na­tional As­sem­bly mem­bers, business gu­rus, diplo­mats and thousands of polo buffs who throng the Us­man Dan­tata Ground on a daily ba­sis.

“We are par­tic­u­larly thank­ful for Emir of Kano and our Grand Pa­tron, HRH Lamido Sanusi (11) for his royal sup­port over the years. We are also in­debted to our nu­mer­ous spon­sors and part­ners for their un­flinch­ing sup­ports that en­sure the suc­cess­ful host­ing of this pres­ti­gious polo tour­na­ment, “the Kano polo boss, de­clared.

Cap­tain of Lin­tex polo team, Jamilu Mo­hammed re­ceives the Emir of Kano Cup from the Emir of Daura, HRH Al­haji Faruk Umar Faruk at a colour­ful clos­ing cer­e­mony of the just con­cluded Kano in­ter­na­tional polo tour­na­ment in Bom­pai, Kano. Lin­tex edged Keffi Ponys on toss to emerge win­ners.

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