Luis Benjumea, Sport Director of the Real Federacion Española de Polo, spoke to PoloLine via Instagram Live on Sunday, to discuss issues surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, which is affecting the entire world, and to analyze the situation in Spain, one of the most punished places around the globe.

These are some of the issues he spoke about:

“This is very devastating, very sad, not only about polo but on the social side as well. I want send a big hug and embrace all those who are battling against this disease and to the families who had lost loved ones to this virus.”

“I am currently in isolation with my family in Sevilla, working from home. Madrid is where the virus spread the most but the government issued a decree to widen the isolation in order to restrict the outings to the minimum.”

“With regards to polo, I’ve been in touch with all Federations and clubs. Activities are extremely restricted; only feed the horses and move them once in a while. The only ones who are allowed to be in contact with them are the owners. It’s about to apply common sense; we won’t have any season at the moment, so everything will be done slowly.”

“We cancelled tournaments – Santa María Polo Club, Trafalgar, Cataluña – and we follow the directives given by authorities. The borders are closed – especially those with Portugal and France, so horse traffic is not allowed.”

“We have to talk, get involved with all Federations and Associations, you can’t make plans because this changes everyday. In Spain we follow the rules of the Consejo Superior de Deportes, the body in charge of all sports. And even though the Federación is an independent body, we are in touch with other equestrian disciplines.”

“So, we’ll see what happens. In case they start playing in England on July 1st, then everything would be shortened. It will be put into a review, talk to patrons and let them decide where they will like to play. For example, if Spain is in lockdown, they can play in France. Or maybe go to Andalucía in November or December. But it is not what we want; we want this to become a bad dream and let there be polo in England, France and Spain. Hopefully, it will happen, because we will all agree on that.”

“We have a great responsibility as well as solidarity. That’s one of the greatest things of polo. It is a friendly entourage, we are all friends. You can play with someone today, and tomorrow that someone plays against you and you remain friends. So polo must set an example to all sports.”

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