U.S. Polo Assn., the official brand of the United States Polo Association and its licensing partners, Brand Machine (United Kingdom) and Stable Brands (South Africa), announced the collaboration with PoloAfrica to bring youth polo players from Africa to tour the United Kingdom this summer.
The two-week trip will culminate in a game to be played at the world-famous Guards Polo Club on June 23, 2019, the same day as the Royal Windsor Cup Final, an event at which the trophy is traditionally presented by Her Majesty the Queen and attended by many celebrities. Other participating sponsors supporting this initiative include Polo150 and the U.K. Armed Forces Polo Association.
Now in its 12th year, PoloAfrica is based in the foothills of the Maluti mountains in the Eastern Free State of South Africa, on the border of Lesotho. Created to benefit rural economically disadvantaged communities, it provides adults the opportunity to engage in equestrian activities in a professional manner and provides children the chance to learn to ride and play polo. A chief goal is helping children expand their horizons, provided they maintain their schoolwork and demonstrate discipline and commitment to caring for the program’s polo ponies.
Ranging in age from 15 to 24, the PoloAfrica team making this groundbreaking tour of the United Kingdom this summer includes: Tebello Mokoarane, NkopaneNikopane, Johanne Mofokeng, Molefi Ralebenya and Tinto Mothijoa. Other members of the PoloAfrica organization accompanying the young players on the tour include Thabo Johannes Mkhwanazi, who will serve as coach and captain; Naledi Nkopane, who will oversee the ponies and will also serve as umpire and coach; and Catherine Cairns, Founder of the PoloAfrica Development Trust.
“We are thrilled to partner with PoloAfrica to support these young aspiring players who have demonstrated the dedication and desire to learn the sport of polo,” said J. Michael Prince, President and CEO of USPA Global Licensing Inc., who manages U.S. Polo Assn. globally. “We have a significant brand presence in both the United Kingdom and Africa and believe this event is another authentic way to engage both sports fans and consumers in our key markets while supporting an important cause and the sport of polo.”
“U.S. Polo Assn. continues to build momentum in the African market through our collaborations with key partners such as PoloAfrica and Sentebale that support the sport of polo and important causes in the region,” commented Andrew Robinson, CEO of Stable Brands. “We are also very excited about the rapid expansion U.S. Polo Assn. is having in Africa and believe it will soon be one of the largest global brands in the market.”