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Inside Polo

WHAT DOES FIP STAND FOR?

By Ron Allen

 

F orget I ntegrity in P olo? Recent developments in China would make one wonder. The current administration of the Federation of International Polo has sold out to the mighty Yuan, the Chinese dollar.

 

The Metropolitan Polo Club in Tianjin, China has been hosting World Cup games for the last three years and the FIP has been lining their pockets with big bucks as they allow China to field their own team without any Chinese players, which is in complete violation of their own rules.

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Metropolitan Polo Club

 

Clearly it’s impossible for China to ever field any pros in light of the fact that polo is making a resurgence in Asia. And it’s highly unlikely that any high goal pros will ever emerge from China since their government only allows one child per family. What family would be willing to allow their only child to participate in such a high-risk sport?

 

Has the FIP lost its integrity and sold out for money? All signs seem to point in that direction. Perhaps they have become just another polo association that gets lost in the controversial position of “we are only trying to do what’s best for polo”.

 

In their last tournament t he winning team made $135,000.00 and Argentine pro Guillermo Terrera, who played on the Hong Kong team, won over $53,000.00 for playing in just three games. Not bad for a 7 goal player. Polo pros deserve to earn whatever they can in the sport. The question is: how long will it be before the 9 and 10 goal players decide to take a run at the “easy money” and then possibly jeopardize the future integrity of the game?

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FIP President: Richard Caleel

 

The same group of people who, 30 years ago, planned to have worldwide uniform handicaps & rules and to get polo into the Olympics has lost all respect within the polo community for getting wrong once again.