I’ve been to two lots of polo in the last three weeks, the terribly sophisticated polo we are all more familiar with at the Rajasthan Polo Club and then the slightly less sophisticated verson played in Ladakh!
Health and safety (on behalf of the spectators) was clearly not a concern for anyone, the far side of the field was lined by trees which had been protected by netting; the near side of the field, which was for spectators, had no netting or any type of protection whatsoever. The crowd were literally kept on their toes the whole match. I of course had found my way into the V.I.P enclosure which got trampled twice and the ball shot at once.
The players were tough, the ponies, despite only being 12hh were tougher, as well as strong, brave and nimble – not forgetting that they were performing at an altitude of 3500m. The teams were the Ladakh Polo Club (in green) and the Indus Polo Club Chuchot (in red). I put my Rs 50.00 on the green team and won!
An unexpected but fabulous afternoon in Ladakh, at what surely has to be the most picturesque setting for polo worldwide.
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