Arden tournament took place on the 5th and 6th of July and saw significant success for Cotswold, the Northern Lions and the Welsh Dragons. Cotswold won the A grade, ultimately making reasonably easy work of Kent Target in the final and also claimed the Lower C grade and combined with Celyn to win the Open Juniors.

Northern Lions had a similarly successful weekend, to reward them for their long journeys south, as they claimed the D grade, the E grade and the runners up spot in the Intermediate Juniors.The Welsh Dragons couldn’t manage two grade wins but they did manage a one-two in the B grade and then also picked up second place in the Upper C grade.

Cotswold and Kent clashed in the A grade final on Sunday afternoon, having both won all their previous matches. On paper it always looked like the Kent ladies section might have a hard job to do against a Cotswold team featuring Charlotte Pykett, Emily Walsh and Rachael Duhig (nee Gayler) and that proved to be the case, with Charlotte in particular aboard the wonderful Alesha inflicting considerable damage on the Kent section. She duly won best player in the grade. Kent’s men tried to pull back the difference but Cotswold contained them well and in a scrappy second chukka got the better of them as Kent gave away a series of penalties. In the final chukka Kent had a big difference to pull back and Cotswold actually continued to put on the pressure and build their lead to end as comfortable winners and lift the Arden A grade plate for the second year in a row.

In the B grade the Welsh Dragons managed a one-two. They combined some of their normal A graders with some up and coming players to field two strong B grade teams and no one else could match them over the weekend. It was a particularly good weekend for Lewis Parr as his horse, Shiraz, won best B grade horse.

The C grade was divided into Upper and Lower C grade and it was Arden who won the Upper C grade on their home territory. They lost to the Welsh Dragons in their opening match on golden goal but then beat everyone else comfortably and the Welsh Dragons also suffered one defeat and ended with a lower goal difference to finish in second place. In the Lower C grade Cotswold emerged victorious with Celyn in second place. Celyn’s Stuart Dyson won best player in the C grade, while Mercedes, owned and ridden by James Allen of Arden, won best horse.

in the D grade, the emerging force that is the Northern Lions got the win as their young players beat all comers to claim the grade. They were particularly delighted to beat Rugby in the final, after finishing second to them two weeks before at the Early Season Tournament. Hamish Gillanders of the Lions won best player and picked up best horse for his horse Fly.

The Lions also claimed the E grade, despite having to play their last couple of matches with only two players after Garry Ferguson’s horse was sent off for kicking out. However, despite that Shaun Gillanders and Harry Crisp proved equal to the task as they won their matches and pushed a combined Chiltern and Bucks Broncos team into second place. Robin Winder of Chiltern did pick up best player while Arden’s Becky Davies collected the best horse prize for her horse Charlotte.

In the Juniors’ grades (Editor’s note: which Polocrosse Extreme were delighted to sponsor!) there were some hard fought battles but ultimately the combined Celyn and Cotswold team defeated Arden in the final. However, Arden did get some revenge as Casino, ridden by Theo Cornforth, won best playing horse.

In the Intermediate Juniors it was another Celyn win as they overcame Northern Lions. Emily Goding of Celyn won best player, while Simmer, owned and ridden by Annabel Wailes-Fairbairn of the Lions, won best horse.

In the Primary Juniors it was a victory for Rugby as they pushed the Rockwood Tigers into second place. Maeghan Brown of Rockwood won best player and Tegan Bristow of Rugby won best pony for Pepper.

Full Results

A Grade
B Grade
Upper C Grade
Lower C Grade
D Grade
E Grade
Open Juniors (Sponsored by Polocrosse Extreme)
Intermediate Juniors (Sponsored by Polocrosse Extreme)
Juniors (Sponsored by Polocrosse Extreme)
1st Cotswold Welsh Dragons Arden Cotswold Northern Lions Northern Lions Celyn/ Cotswold Celyn Rugby
2nd Kent Target Welsh Dragons Welsh Dragons Celyn Rugby Chiltern/ Bucks Broncos Arden Northern Lions Rockwood Tigers
Best Horse Domalon (Will Halcrow, Kent target) Shiraz (Lewis Parr, Welsh Dragons) Mercedes (James Allen, Arden) Stuart (Stuart Dyson, Celyn) Fly (Hamish Gillanders, Northern Lions) Charlotte (Becky Davies, Arden) Casino (Theo Cornforth, Arden) Simmer (Annabel Wailes-Fairbairns, Northern Lions) Pepper (Tegan Bristow, Rugby)
Best Player Charlotte Pykett (Cotswold) Matt Smith (Kent Target)   Hamish Gillanders, (Northern Lions) Robin Winder (Chiltern) Finn Bristow (Rugby) Emily Goding (Celyn) Maeghan Brown (Rockwood Tigers