British polo post-Brexit
Following Brexit and the UK’s departure from the EU, the Hurlingham Polo Association (HPA) Stewards have reviewed the Tournament Conditions to bring them in line with the Government and Home Office’s policy to provide greater support to those with British citizenship; “In recent years the majority of overseas players have played here as EU citizens, but after this season, unless they are clearly a patron, all players from overseas will have to be 4 goals and have a visa to play here. The visa will limit them to playing in the 12 goal and above although it is hoped that the Home Office will agree that a patron who brings in a player will continue to be able to play with him in the 8 goal. The current conditions limit teams to two such players in the high goal and one in the 12 and 15 goal.”“It has been the clear aim of the Stewards to structure the conditions so that there is one British or Irish player in every team at every level.
However, in recognition of the restrictions on EU passported players following Brexit it is considered that it would be beneficial to all concerned if two overseas players are allowed in the 12 and 15 goal as well. It should be noted that players from South Africa and Chile will be treated the same as other overseas players as the agreements with those countries was through the EU.The HPA’s Tournament Conditions place certain handicap limits on teams and individuals and Any Overseas Professional Player (OPP) must be a minimum of 4 goals and be here on a Tier 2 or Tier 5 visa as a polo player, the HPA’s Tournament Conditions can be viewed in full by clicking here. The Stewards also reviewed the minimum age and handicap for the 22 goal and it was agreed that it should remain at 15 unless the player had reached 3 goals.Another topic was the number of ponies played in the 22 goal are limited to 40 for the team. This equates to the limits in place in Argentina. They will also review the 22 goal handicap at the mid-season meeting later this month.
Photograph: The 2021 Conditions will stipulate at least one British or Irish player in every team at every level. By ©www.imagesofpolo.com