Sushi, Soca & Liquid Gold
Appleton streak home to victory in the 2009 NCB Capital Markets Jamaica Open
by Karen Kranenburg
There is an old saying that Nero fiddled whilst Rome burnt… however this was a fate that definitely did not apply in this instance, there certainly was no fiddling on the part of what undoubtedly was the strongest team in the 2009 NCB Capital Markets Jamaica Open, the Apppleton sponsored team of The Hon. James Robertson. As for getting burnt the only ones that suffered this fate, were the opposition left in their wake. From the opening stages of this tournament Appleton were clear and present, and asserting their authority on the field, their 6 goal pro Santiago Wulff, displayed flashes of brilliance, showing us all what being 6 goals was all about. They might not have been the best mounted team of the tournament, but what they lacked in horse-power they certainly made up for in intent, determination and not to mention raw talent.
Sponsors NCB Capital Markets had pushed the boat out with a Sushi & Soca themed event, with a luxury VIP marquee for 200 of their guests, and live band Fab Five to entertain the crowds post-match. I think it was safe to say this was a Jamaica Open, with some style and panache like no other. There were 4 match days in total, 2 being the qualifying days to decide who would make it through to the finals on the “big match day” on the Sunday to collect the silverware and bask in the glory. Despite some controversy in the opening stages, the 3 elimination days proceeded without too much incident, with James Robertson’s Appleton team being pitted against Paul Lalor’s Spanish Court Hotel team in the final. Will Power vs Horse Power – it was always going to be an interesting game.
The opening game on the final Sunday put Mitsubishi against Jamaica for the 3rd & 4th place honours. Mitsubishi were firing on all cylinders on this day, the combination of Martin Ravina’s organisation and Fernando Arsenjo’s defensive skills gave Mitsubishi a decisive victory over Jamaica 6 – 4. After this game, came the much awaited final – Spanish Court Hotel Vs Appleton, from the time the ball was thrown in Appleton were off to the races and were determined to assert their dominance from an early stage. Spanish Court Hotel despite their superior pony power probably had their worst game of the tournament, on the day that it mattered the most. Santiago Wulff and Juan Humbert at Appleton were brilliant in defense as they thwarted Spanish Court Hotel’s efforts to score. As the minutes clicked down, Spanish Court Hotel tried everything to reduce their deficit, but to no avail. The day and the glory belonged to Appleton, as the final whistle blew they rode out the victors 6 – 3.
After the prize-giving came the usual post-match celebrations, as the Kingston Polo Club coffee-table was once again press ganged into action, as all and sundry tested its stability and structural capabilities as DJ Omar turned the tunes late into the night.