Despite being only being a 2 goal tournament, the Novices Cup was fast and furious throughout, with a series of exciting and dramatic games in the blazing sunshine.
The first league game was a battle between the two big hitters, Lachie Gilmore for Four Suits and Rupert Lewis for Silvertown Properties. Despite Silvertown’s half goal advantage, the match concluded 7 – 5 ½ in Four Suits’ favour.
Redex and Tomlinson Equine then produced a closely fought match. Redex claimed the first goal, but the combined effort of Emma Wood and Tamara Fox allowed Tomlinson Equine to draw level by half time and eventually inch ahead to win 3 – 2.
The colourfully named Porky Pigs were the next to face Tomlinson Equine the following day. The teams were on level pegging through to the third chukka, but Porky Pigs claimed two goals in the final chukka to secure victory.
Saturday 7th July had two exciting matches to thrill spectators prior to the World Cup football. Fenturi seized the initiative from the off to score four goals in the first chukka and maintained this lead throughout the game as the response of Four Suits in the second half could only fall short. The final score was 5 – 3/12 to Fenturi.
The following game saw Confido, headed by Charlotte Boyd in her debut for the team, take on Silvertown Properties, with the former leading confidently throughout. Confido led 3 -1 at half time and continued to pull ahead to 6 -1 in the third chukka. Silvertown battled back in the final chukka, but it was too little too late as Confido claimed a 7th goal and a decisive win.
Sunday would see the victors of Saturday as Confido and Fenturi went toe-to-toe in a hard-fought and close match. The lead was in Fenturi’s favour at half time, but Confido drew level in the third chukka and continued their momentum into the final chukka to score and lead by two goals. At close of play it was another win for Confido by 5 goals to 3.
Another high scoring game took place on Wednesday 11th July between Redex and Bluestone Insurance. Redex led by 3 goals to two at half time, Bluestone Insurance dominated the second half to claim a conclusive win on a score of 7 -3.
A fast paced and evenly matched game featuring Porky Pigs and Bluestone Insurance took place on the Thursday. The win looked to be going to Bluestone as they lead by one goal into the third chukka, however the Porky Pigs lead a rallying charge to draw level 7 – 7 at the cry of the final bell. In the extra chukka a stunning final goal by Henry Jodrell allowed the Porky Pigs to claim victory 8 – 7.
Bolstered by their win, Porky Pigs came out of their Semi Final against Four Suits with a comfortable 4 -2, sending them to the Final. They were to be joined by Confido who ran to a decisive 7 ½ – 3 win over Bluestone Insurance.
Fenturi and Tomlinson Equine made a start to proceedings on Saturday 14th with the Subsidiary final, with the latter undisputedly dominating play throughout. Fenturi could only claim one goal in response to the impressive landslide of 9 goals from Tomlinson Equine.
This was followed by the ‘Wee Boys’ final between Silvertown Properties and Redex; by comparison a significantly closer affair. There was just a half goal between the teams at half time, and by the third Redex had creeped up to lead. Silvertown refused to be side lined and in the dying minutes of the final chukka they secured a 5th goal to make it 5 1/2 to 5.
During the Final, Confido kept the Porky Pigs on the back foot, notching up goal after goal onto the scoreboard. However, as the 4th chukka dawned, in a flash of red Gina Hutchinson stormed down the field, hogging the ball all the way down to score. With a minute and a half to go, there was a glimmer of hope for the Pigs. They put up a strong fight and in the final seconds Gina made it a double with another impressive goal. However, the final bell sounded, and their comeback was stopped in its tracks and the 4 ½ – 2 win went to Confido.
Prizes were kindly provided by Plusbac, a probiotic company that has developed a microbial supplement specially designed for horses and presented by former Beaufort intern Chloe Taylor.