Mbali Mzinyane
2 minute read
8 Sep 2016
5:04 pm

Making polo accessible for all

Mbali Mzinyane

Founded in 1934, Inanda Club is the home of equestrian sport Polo and hosts some of the country’s most prestigious polo events.

Picture: Supplied stock image.

This year the distinguished club will be hosting the imminent Land Rover Africa Cup, which will see different African countries fiercely compete in the finals weekend on September 17 and 18.

Speaking more about the respected tournament, Polo Manager Craig James said that the Land Rover Africa Cup was all about different African polo clubs coming together to compete and to enjoy a game of polo. He added a main focus of the tournament was to make polo accessible at club level throughout the continent.

“Land Rover African Cup is probably one the most prestigious tournaments we have in the South African calender. The Land Rover Africa Cup is a club event that is played at club level. It is making polo of this prestigious level accessible to clubs in South Africa and throughout Africa,” said James.

The countries competing for the coveted 2016 Land Rover Africa Cup Tournament are Egypt, two Nigerian sides from different clubs, Kenya, South Africa and the Development Team, which has been dubbed “Above & Beyond” in line with this year’s theme of the event.

Picture: Supplied

Picture: Supplied

Inanda Club is the home of Inanda Polo Academy, which is a polo school that focuses on the development of players. The polo school also aims to make the sport accessible and affordable to aspiring and novice players.

“The Polo School is where people can learn, be coached and rent time on horses. Polo is a very expensive sport because you have to buy a whole bunch of horses to play. What the polo school has done is that it has made it more accessible to people out there starting from humble beginnings.”

“Polo has always been a very small community of people because it’s so expensive. It has not always been accessible to people who have always wanted to play polo on a budget. What the polo school does is that it provides facilities and equipment for students.”

Picture: Supplied

Picture: Supplied

Polo player at Inanda Club Zumpie Tsotetsi has benefited greatly from the development structures at Inanda Club. The player who began working at Inanda Club as a groom, now plays professionally and will be participating in the tournament.  Through playing polo professionally, Tsotetsi has made a living for himself and has taken polo as his career.

“I take polo as my career now because I started as a groom, then I became a player, and now I’m on a professional level. Since I started polo I managed to achieve a lot of things. I’ve started my own business in the Free State, and I am able to make a living for myself through Polo.”