HPA Plans to Introduce Separate Handicaps at 22 Goal Level

Following the HPA Handicap Committee meeting on Wednesday 26 July there have been rumours galore regarding 22 goal handicaps for 2018. We have obtained the minutes of the meeting from David Woodd, Chief Executive of the HPA which are set out below.

Talk on the street is that the HPA has been helping the careers of up-and-coming players by keeping their handicaps ‘competitive’ and therefore attractive to 22 goal team selectors. Consequently, some feel that outside 22 goal these players are then dominating play at lower levels and have what some view as unfairly low handicaps. By having separate handicaps, the HPA objective seems to be that those playing off overly competitive handicaps at 22 goal will be effectively ‘put up’ for when they are playing at under 22 goal level.

The whole topic is fraught with questions regarding dates, teams, validity and generally “what ifs?”. Let’s hope everybody can work together to mutual benefit and that the whole system will not be too confusing for anybody not immersed in high goal themselves. Watch this space.

Policy for 22 Goal Handicaps in 2018

Annex B Handicap Minutes 26.07.17

For 2018 the HPA plans to introduce separate handicaps for the 22 goal as set out below.
End of Season Meetings.
Wednesday 26 July.  Only those who played in The Queen’s and Gold Cup have been considered and if they are offered a job in the 22 goal in 2018 they will play off their 22 goal handicap.
Monday 21 August. At the meeting on Monday 21 August all those who played in the Prince of Wales, the Warwickshire and the VL 18, 15, 12 and 8 will be given a normal HPA handicap for 2018 based on their performance in those levels. Those already awarded an HPA 22 Goal handicap will be given an HPA handicap as well which may be higher, lower or the same.  That will be their HPA handicap for all tournaments except for the 22 goal. For international tournaments or overseas the highest handicap shall apply.
The 22 Goal for 2018.
A patron or sponsor proposing to field a team for the 22 goal (any of the 4 tournaments) may apply to the HPA for a player of 3 to 7 goals inclusive to be awarded a separate handicap for the 22 goal if they do not have one from 22 goal end of season meeting on Wed 26 Jul 2017.
• The HPA may consider applications at any time but any application must be made to the HPA by 31 January 2018 and a patron or sponsor shall be limited to one application. 
• The application must provide details of the team and tournaments to be entered.
• An application may be made for any player of any nationality who was handicapped at the Victor Ludorum Handicap meeting on 21 August 2017. The HPA will have no obligation to consider:
o A player that went down at the 21 Aug 2017 end of season VL meeting;
o Any application received after 31 January 2018;
o Any player that has a higher handicap elsewhere in the world;
o A member of a team which includes a 10 goal player;
• If the application results in a lower 22 Goal Handicap being awarded, that player will be tied to the patron or sponsor that made the application unless the HPA agrees otherwise.
• Any HPA 22 goal handicap awarded will be at the discretion of the HPA and awarded in the interests of polo in the UK; those who have invested in, played in and supported polo here.
• There will no right of appeal.
The intention is to:
1. Allow players to be handicapped competitively for the 22 goal against the other players at that level. This has always created a pressure to lower handicaps.
2. Allow those 22 goal players to be handicapped fairly against the players in the rest of the polo; those given competitive handicaps for the 22 may be playing on an overly competitive handicap in the rest of polo.
3. Allow those players who have not played in the high goal to be given a competitive handicap for the 22 goal if an application is made by a patron.
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