Ambassadors Polo Cup kicks-off

HARARE – It is amazing how only four players riding on horsebacks can play on a field nine times bigger than a football pitch.

The answer to this question lies at Bushman Rock Safaris in Ruwa where the annual Ambassadors Polo Tournament kicks-off today.

The four teams that will take part in the 2017 edition of the Fine and Country title sponsored event are Fine and Country Eland, Fine and Country Kudus, Safaguard Sables and Barclays Buffaloes.

The title sponsors have poured $10 000 towards the tournament which is also being run in collaboration with the British Business Association while Britain’s ambassador to Zimbabwe Catriona Lang is expected to be the guest of honour.

The tournament starts with an elimination round today featuring Safaguard Sables against Barclays Buffaloes and the other one pitting Fine and Country Eland versus Fine and Country Kudus.

The winners of today’s eliminators will then clash in tomorrow’s final at the same venue.

Defending champions, brothers Pancho and Guillo Macloughin from Argentina naturally look forward to retaining their title this weekend.

Jonathan Passaportis the managing director of Bushman Rock Safaris explains what Polo entails.

“It’s a pretty amazing sport. It’s played by four players all on horseback against another four players all on the horseback,” Passaportis said.

“It’s on the biggest field in any sporting discipline. It’s actually the size of nine football fields. With Polo you hit the ball from horseback.

“Arnold Swaznegger actually described it as playing hockey on the back of a horse during an earthquake and that’s effectively the same feeling that goes with that.”

Just like any ball sport, the whole idea is to score goals.

“The aim of the game is to get the ball through the goals and the opposition of course is trying to stop you do that,” he said.

“The difference with Polocrosse is that Polocrosse is played on horseback with a net, where you catch the ball and you throw the ball between players but Polo is played where you hit the ball and you pass the ball up between different players.”

A game of Polo comprise seven minute periods called chukkas with three minute breaks in between the chukka and the A division is usually made up of five to six chukkas.

The four-member team comprise a number one who is basically a striker, the goalkeeper who is number four, the captain who is normally fills the role of a sweeper and the midfielder (number two).

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.