EXHIBITION POLO MATCH
This 16 Dec 2017, We are trying to
organize an exhibition polo match in Myanmar.
Polo used to be played at the historic Kyaikkasan
Horse Grounds in Yangon back in 1933, and it is here that we are
hoping to hold an exhibition match of "Old Siam vs Old Rangoon"
-- the first polo match in Myanmar for over 80 years. This event
will be the lead event to commemorate 70 years of relations between Thailand and Myanmar.
EMAIL FOR INFORMATION
A form of Polo was played in Myanmar
during ancient times. The King titled "Nat Shin Naung" was well known
for his bravery and his wise poetry. He was one of the kings of the Taungoo Dynasty and he reigned
this region in Myanmar from 971-974
(Myanmar calendar is now 1375).
According to historical records in Myanmar, it is not certain
whether the king played polo himself or not, but he was very fond of
horse riding and enjoyed watching polo games. In Myanmar, this
ancient polo game was called "Gulie Hitting." (This historical
information kindly provided by U Htay Kyaw, Secretary General,
Myanmar Equestrian Federation).
HRH The Prince of Wales
playing polo in Mandalay in 1922.
Photograph courtesy of Yangon
Kyaikkasan Stadium as it stands today.
We will request from the Ministry of Sport to use the two football
pitches and make one field of approximately 250 yards in length. The
Thailand Polo Association and King Power have offered to bring 20
horses from Thailand to Myanmar by road via Mae Sot and Myawaddy to
Yangon. They will provide free transport and bring two teams for the
exhibition polo match. Myanmar Equestrian Federation is assisting
with information on the quarantine procedure, stabling of the
horses, and inviting members from the 15 equestrian clubs in Myanmar
to the event. It is hoped that this exhibition will honor the proud
polo tradition in Myanmar, which was at one time one of the leading
polo playing nations in Asia, and facilitate a friendship between
equestrian enthusiasts in Myanmar and polo players in Thailand, so
that the sport of polo can return to Myanmar. There are currently 6
countries in ASEAN with active national polo teams (Thailand,
Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Indonesia, Philippines), and the vision
of The Thailand Polo Association is that by increasing the level of
polo played in Asia, we can perhaps, one day, see the return of polo
as an Olympic sport as it was last played in the 1936 Berlin
Olympics. (Aerial photo courtesy of Yangon Heritage Trust) --
Polo at Kyaikkasan Stadium in 1933.
Photograph courtesy of Yangon
The first meeting between the Thailand Polo Association and the
Myanmar Equestrian Federation was held at
the Chatrium Hotel on the morning of 29 Sep 2017. This
meeting was followed up with a meeting at the Royal Thai Embassy
with H.E. Ambassador Jakr Boon-Long. The Thai Embassy is fully
supportive of the Thailand Myanmar Friendship Exhibition Polo Match
as the inaugural event for the celebration of 70 years of relations
between Thailand and Myanmar in 2018.
H.E. The Thai Ambassador will join us with our upcoming meeting with
His Excellency Dr. U Myint Htwe, The Minister of Health and Sport,
up in Naypyidaw for the approval to use the beautiful Kyaikkasan
Stadium for this historic Friendship Polo Match.
The members of the Myanmar Equestrian Federation and the Deputy
Chief of Mission in the Thai Embassy, Minister Narong, were granted
an audience with His Excellency U Phyo Min Thein, The Chief Minister
of Yangon, to present the proposal of Polo at Kyaikkasan. The Chief
Minister had no objection to the event and its inaugural
commemoration of the 70 years of relations between Thailand and
Myanmar. He made an important point that with Democracy comes the
importance of following the Rule of Law. We are hoping that he will
be able to join us for the event in December.
COMMENTATOR "MISS MYANMAR 2013" GON YI AYE KYAW
We are very pleased to announce that Gon Yi has enthusiastically
agreed to commentate the FRIENDSHIP POLO EXHIBITION MATCH in
December. She is a very keen rider at the Yangon Equestrian Club,
and she is fluent in English and Burmese. She has been brushing up
on her polo terminology, and she wants to come to Thailand and learn
to play polo. She will hopefully be joined in her commentation by
veteran and very humorous Myanmar Football Commentator Maung Maung
Aye. Pictured here with Shwe Thamee (Golden Daughter) -- a
mare sired by Aung San Su Kyi's Stallion Myanma Ahla (Myanmar
Beauty) which was a gift from MEF to The Honorable Lady.
H.E. Thai Ambassador Jakr Boon-Long has written to the Minister of
Health and Sport expressing his support for the Thailand Myanmar
as the lead event for the 70th Anniversary of Relations between
Thailand and Myanmar. Pending approval from the Minister, there will
be a Press Conference at the Thai Embassy in the week following 05
The TPA Team has completed an inspection of the Kyaikkasan Field,
The Stable Facilities at Mya Yiek Nyo Hotel, The Chatrium Hotel.
They are working very closely with Khun Arpa and May Su at
Index-Creative in Yangon.
Our two exhibition match teams will be "Old Siam" vs "Old Rangoon"
as polo has not been played in Myanmar for over 80 years, the theme
of our match is one of nostalgia looking back to an earlier time.
This polo match will be the inaugural event of the Celebration of 70
years of relations between Thailand and Myanmar. His Excellency, The
Thailand Ambassador Jakr Boon-Long will welcome the honored guests
for this event.
PROGRAM -- 16 December
14:00 -- Gates open for spectators to arrive.
VIP guests on the West side of the field. Free for all to watch on
the East side of the field.
14:30 -- Remarks from two or our esteemed guests.
15:00 -- The teams will be introduced, and the ball will be
15:30 -- At halftime, we will invite our spectators to stomp
in the divots.
16:30 -- The Game is completed, and the winning Trophy (to be
named) will be presented.
16:45 -- A Myanmar Equestrian demonstration organized by
17:00 -- Football goals returned to the field, so football
play can be resumed the next day.
19:00 -- Proposed Gala Dinner at Chatrium Hotel to thank our
gracious hosts M.E.F. and Ministers.
There are currently no polo horses in Myanmar, so we will drive them
in. This journey will take about 30 hours over 2 days. We will use 2
trucks to carry the 20 horses. We also have to carry a weeks food
for the horses, 10 grooms and vets, saddles & bridles, and electric
fencing to keep the horses. We will arrive 6 days before play, so
the horses can settle down, and they will make the journey back the
day after the match. We are extremely grateful to U Zay Thi Ha, the owner of
MYA YEIK NYO Hotel in downtown Yangon, who has kindly offered
for the horses to be kept on the 14 acre hotel grounds that is only
2 km from Kyaikkasan Stadium. This beautiful teak and gilded hotel
is over 100 years old with a commanding view of Shwedagon Pagoda.
LEG 1 from King Power Polo Club
to Mae Sot -- LEG 2 from Myawaddy to Yangon.
TASKS AT HAND
- TPA, MEF, Thai Embassy Proposal
to H.E. Minister of Sport (completed on 20 Nov)
- MEF, Thai Ambassador meet with
H.E. Dr. Myint Htwe (waiting MEF)
- 200 Booklets (English & Burmese)
- Statements from Thai
Ambassador, TPA Pres, MEF Pres, MOS, Chief Minister, KP Chm.
- 200 Posters (Index-Creative)
- Press Conference (Thai Embassy
- week following 05 Dec)(Skynet)
- Invite Aung San Su Kyi to throw
in the first ball
- Passports & Microchips for
horses (already prepared by Vet Team)
- Select 22 horses & players
(Lucas in process)
- Details of Trucks,
Type/Quantity of food, medicine, tack, etc Document for Customs
- 3-5 MEF team to visit VSSC to
be Receiver at Mae Sot Border prior to trip
- Move horses on 07 Dec / Cross
into Myanmar on 08 Dec (Fazeela, Toey, Tsu)
- Polo Goals, Scoreboard, Sponsor
banners, White lines, Chukka Bell
- Chairs, VIP tent, Generator, PA
system, Toilet (Index-Creative)
- Ambulance standby (Victoria
- Refreshments and staff (Chatrium
Hotel & Index)
- Trophy (Fazeela)
- Book Chatrium Hotel (TPA)
- Small Gala Dinner at Chatrium
to thank MEF and Ministers
- Ready Trucks for trip (TPA)
- Game Shirts (ready on 01 Dec
- Gift footballs, nets,
scoreboards to Sports Institute (thanks to students)
- Workers to replace divots /
Workers to fill ditch and clear ditch (Index-Creative)
We wish to thank our friends for
supporting this event:
Webpage by Tom Claytor