UAE are victorious, beating Dubai 12-11 to win the 2023 British Open for the Cowdray Gold Cup. The win marks the first Cowdray Gold Cup title for Kayley Maria Smith, substituting for an injured H. H Sheika Maitha, becoming the second female player to lift the trophy in the history of the Gold Cup. Alongside fellow teammates Tommy Beresford and Lukin Monteverde, the team played to victory with second-time winner of the British Open Barto Castagnola.
Despite heavy clouds in the morning and a gusty wind, the sun came out on Sunday afternoon as the two teams battled it out on the world-renowned Lawns polo field.
Thousands of spectators flocked to the grounds to enjoy picnics on the side-lines, luxury shopping, live music, competitions including the U.S. Polo Assn. Longest Shot, and of course the excitement of the match itself. The Sotogrande Andalucia Lawns Enclosure, conveniently located just off the centre line of the pitch, was the perfect place to enjoy the excitement and thrill of the most anticipated match on the UK polo calendar.
The Dubai Polo Team faced a strong start from UAE, who secured the first three of their goals in the first chukka. Yet undeterred, Dubai pushed back, minimised the goal difference to just one going into half-time. Both teams played a strong game in the second half, but Dubai were unable to stop Lukin Monteverde scoring with a minute of play left in the final chukka leading UAE to victory by 12 goals to 11.
With both teams at the podium, the glittering Gold Cup trophy was presented to a delighted H.H Sheika Maitha by Amanda Pearson, a member of the Cowdray family. The MVP title was presented to Barto Castagnola by Michael Prince, President and CEO of USPA Global Licensing Inc.
The Best Playing Pony rug was presented by Hon. Mrs Lila Pearson, to Solar, played by Barto Castagnola and owned by the UAE Polo Team.
The King Power Best Playing Patron Pony rug was awarded to Chalo Galaxy by Liz Higgins, played and owned by Rashid Albwardy.
The Robert Graham Umpires Trophy was presented by Betsy and Vanessa Graham to Jason Dixon, Peter Wright and Tim Bowen.
Re-watch all the action from this unforgettable Gold Cup final at Cowdray TV.