Guards Polo Club hosted its first China Day on Wednesday, 18th June to celebrate a new partnership with the Yida International Investment Group. During a Chinese-themed lunch in the Clubhouse, Neil Hobday, CEO of Guards Polo Club, and Yida Zhang, Chairman of this investment group, signed agreements confirming the Club’s role as consultants and strategic partners in an impressive new country club and resort which will be developed just outside Beijing, China.

This world-class project, plans of which were revealed during the day, will include a magnificent polo facility and Guards Polo Club’s role is to ensure that the style, elegance and standards for which the Club is known for throughout the polo world, will be replicated in China.

As Neil Hobday said: “It is wonderful to be given a blank sheet of paper and asked to create your dream polo club and I am delighted that our vision has been accepted by Mr Zhang and the Yida International Investment Group. Today is a culmination of a year’s work and we are here to sign a collaboration agreement.”

To highlight Guards Polo Club’s high standards, the team at Smith’s Lawn produced an excellent day of polo for the Yida Group and its guests. Not only could they watch a Royal Windsor quarter-final match during lunch, but were then invited to take their seats in the Club’s exclusive Committee Stand to watch an exhibition game for the inaugural China Trophy. This match featured the Club’s Ambassadors – Max Charlton, Jack Richardson, Richard Le Poer and George Meyrick – who teamed up with four of our established patrons – Simon Holland and Hilali Noordeen for the Yida team and Clive Reid and John Gunn for the Guards side.

As China Day is also the date for the annual Eton Tea Party – where an invited group of boys from this most famous of schools enjoys afternoon tea in the Royal Box in the presence of HM The Queen, Her Majesty generously presented the prizes for the China Day match, accompanied by Mr Zhang. Appropriately for a day which was all about the spirit of partnership in polo, the match ended in a draw and both Yida’s Hilali Noordeen and Guards Polo Club’s Clive Reid stepped up to receive the trophy.


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