Julian de Lusarreta – Coca-Cola
A rising star in polo, Julian de Lusarreta emerged on the scene at the International Polo Club Palm Beach (IPC) in 2016, capturing the 112th U.S. Open Polo Championship with Orchard Hill. Since then, de Lusarreta has been an impactful player worldwide, where his handicap has increased from 6-goals in 2016 to 8-goals in the USA for the 2019 season. The latest handicap increase came on the heels of a successful 2017 season with Tonkawa, where alongside Sapo Caset, de Lusarreta and Tonkawa began the season with a 10-1 record, including capturing the 2018 Joe Barry Cup. Along with his strong performance at IPC, de Lusarreta has seen success in England and Argentina, including a successful Triple Crown with La Dolfina Polo Ranch that saw him play a vital part in their fourth-place finish.
After previous seasons of playing a secondary role to 10-goal teammates, de Lusarreta has been thrust into a starring role with Coca-Cola this season, as he will be looked upon to lead the team offensively, while managing the game from the #4 position. A staple of de Lusarreta’s performance has been his ability to create offensive opportunities, which was evident in the 2018 20 goal season where he ranked third and fourth respectively in shot attempts and field goals. This came through in Coca-Cola’s debut against La Indiana, with de Lusarreta producing a game-high five shots, converting two for goals. Taking the next step, de Lusarreta was also responsible for penalty taking duties in his opening game, converting his penalty 2 and 3 attempts while also receiving a penalty 1.
Often in the #3 position, de Lusarreta excels in his transition from the back of the game to the front, finding the right time to attack and catch the defense off guard. While his current role in the Ylvisaker Cup will place a greater responsibility on his defensive duties, he was still capable of having a significant offensive impact against La Indiana. For the upcoming GAUNTLET OF POLO™ series, de Lusarreta will be joined by fellow 8-goaler Ignacio Novillo Astrada, allowing him to shift back into a more offensively minded role that will be similar to year’s past. However, for the Ylvisaker Cup, de Lusarreta will showcase his ability to lead and manage the on-field play of Coca-Cola; a key component of his evolution into a top player in the sport. Thursday’s upcoming game against Iconica will see de Lusarreta go head-to-head with Iconica’s 9-goaler Sebastian Merlos as both teams fight for their first win of the tournament.