By Victor Okoye
The Abuja Rubicon, on Thursday, escaped with a narrow 6-5 goal victory against Malcomines, and gets into the final of the race for the prestigious President’s Cup at the ongoing Carnival Polo Tournament in Abuja.
The Nigerian News Agency reports that in the 10-goal match for the tournament’s top prize, Malcomines conceded half a goal at the start of the game to make up for the teams’ handicap difference.
The Rubicon’s total handicap was 15 with the Badamasi brothers (+3), Jamilu Mohammed (+3) and the Argentine assassin Gonzalo Bourdieu, six goals that make up the team.
Malcomines, for his part, had a total team handicap of 13 with Hamisu Buba (+3), Murtala Mohammed (+3), Fernando (+2) and Juan Cruz of Argentina, five goals at the top of the quartet of players. .
The throbbing but stressful encounter was indeed a strange upset caused by Rubicon against a more illustrious opponent.
But for the highly rated Buba, who met his qualification, especially in the first two chukkers, as he failed to convert many chances for Malcomines, the scoring line would have been different.
However, despite all his mistakes in front of goal, Buba managed a hat-trick, as Murtala and Cruz each scored one goal for five goals, just half a goal away from the victory.
Rubicon’s young Badamasi brothers proved to be a great number of players for Jos’s team, as Mohammed and Bourdieu combined well, switching between defensive and sweeping roles to feed the attacking duo.
Bourdieu scored a total of four goals, while Idris Badamasi and Mohammed each scored a goal for Rubicon to score a total of six goals.
At the other end, Malcomines was relentless as they matched the firepower of their opponents, but still fell short with just five goals.
With the result, the Rubicon table toppers, who had won their first two games, have now secured a spot in Sunday’s final with maximum points.
Jos-based Malcomines are second with three points, while Lintex and Keffi Ponies, who have yet to register points in the tournament, are third and fourth respectively.
FCT-based Rubicon will fight Malcomines again in Sunday’s final, while Lintex and Keffi Ponys play for a chance to win the Army Chief of Staff Cup (COAS).
In other results of the games played on Friday, 60 yards thrashed D-Hayatt by 6 goals to 3 and a half goals for the Legislative Shield.
In this way, the winner of the meeting between 60 yards and Casiva, with three points, will face the six-point leader, Fas Agro, in Sunday’s final.
The tournament, which began on Monday, will end on Sunday, November 15 with the grand final.