Kent once again claimed the A grade trophy as Midland Tournament was played out under a mixture of bright sunshine and short showers at Henley in Arden. However, overall it was once again Vale Impi’s weekend as they took two wins and second place to take 46 points to help their pusuit of Kent in the league.

The A grade was a round robin and after Kent it was Celyn who took the most points and once again finished second, as they did at Cotswold three weeks ago. They lost to Kent by just two goals, and though Kent might make a couple of changes to their team for the Nationals and Highlanders will come out to play, having been lacking from the last couple of tournaments, Celyn are now potential contenders in the A grade. However, the form that Jason Webb and Banjo showed having just returned from a broken collar bone (editors note: Jason’s collar bone, not Banjo’s) was served as a stark reminder of both what the other clubs need to overcome if they are to defeat Kent and also of what the UK were lacking when they played Ireland a few weeks ago.

In the B grade it was Solent who took top spot, as they used their own young talent, in players such as Joe Hopkins, mixed with the experience of players such as Shelley Yirrell (nee King) and Kerry Bean, who they borrowed for the weekend, to get their first B grade victory of the year. Canterbury Colts picked up second spot to continue the good form they have shown in the B grade this year.

In the Upper C grade Vale Impi and Ashfields renewed their eastern region rivalry and again it was Vale impi who just came out on top. They won 17-14 in a very close final which ebbed and flowed but in the end Ashfields couldn’t quite handle the sheer speed of Matt Smith and Spooks and the game slipped away from them at the end. However while Matt won best number 1, Livvy Foley of Ashfield picked up best number 3 for her superb play against him.

C grade had a particularly large entry this tournament and so there was also a lower C grade and this went to Arden, the only midland region club to claim places at their home tournament. They easily overcame a Welsh Dragonsteam in the final by 21-4 with some great play from their youngsters Chris Milburn, Dave Baker and Louie Cornforth, who next weekend will head north to Derbyshire to try and defend their Pony Club Polocrosse Championship trophy for North Warwickshire.

In the D grade Canterbury Colts got the better of their local rivals Kent as they finished on the top spot with Kent just behind them in second. They had the help of young Pip Rowland, who they borrowed from Arden, and he took best number 1, while Jasper Gale took best number 2 and best horse for Pasha.

In the E Grade Vale Impi scored a one two and took home all the prizes.They also, therefore, did well in the best numbers with Lily Warne getting best number 1, Phoebe Ward got best number 3 and Celia Price picked up best horse. Gary Pedley won best number 2 in his first tournament, having clearly learnt a lot from watching his son Max play the last few years, though Max himself is currently sidelined with a fractured arm.

Juniors again went to Arden as they overcame a valiant combined Welsh Dragons and Henson (from France) side, which overcame language barriers to push Arden all the way. Hugh Carthew, who also recently came back from a broken collar bone, did particulay well as he doubled up to play a number 2 and a number 1 for the Welsh Dragons/ Henson and took home best number 2 for his efforts.

The Primary Juniors saw the Welsh Dragons pitted against Henson and it was the French side who won out as they top the top spot from the Dragons. Gail Beaufils picked up the best number 1 for the Henson side, making the long trip from France very worth while for them.

A Grade
B Grade
Upper C Grade
Lower C Grade
D Grade
E Grade
Primary Juniors
1st Kent Target Solent Vale Impi Arden Canterbury Colts Vale Impi Arden Henson
2nd Celyn Canterbury Colts Ashfields Welsh Dragons/ Henson Kent Target Vale Impi Welsh Dragons/ Henson Welsh Dragons
Best Horse Banjo – Jason Webb (Kent Target) Diva – Dan Rohan (Kent Target) Jesus Christ – Sophie Harding (Kent Target)   Pasha – Jasper Gale (Canterbury Colts) Celia Price’s Horse Dave – Chris Lampard (Welsh Dragons, loaned from Canterbury Colts) Bumble – Georgia Caine (Welsh Dragons, loaned from Ashfields)
Best Numbers              
1) Alex Richardson (Kent) Will Hunt (Cotswold) Matt Smith (Vale Impi) Chris Milburn (Arden) Pip Rowland (Canterbury Colts, loaned from Arden) Lily Warne (Vale Impi) Tash Mason (Arden) Gail Beaufilis (Henson)
2) Will Halcrow (Kent) Shelley Yirrell (Solent, loaned from Highlanders) Tom Bowden-Eyre (Vale Impi) Sophie Harding (Arden) Jasper Gale (Canterbury Colts) Gary Pedley (Vale Impi, loaned from Pennine) Hugh Carthew (Welsh Dragons) Bumble – Georgia Caine (Welsh Dragons, loaned from Ashfields)
3) Jason Webb (Kent) Kerry Bean (loaned from Kent) Livvy Foley (Ashfields) Louise Cornforth (Arden) Gabi Jones (Welsh Dragons) Phoebe Ward (Vale Impi) Alice Zawoda (Arden) Annabel Twinberrow (Arden)