I’ve always been interested in sports. I’m definitely no Serena Williams but tennis is a bit of me and I’m not too shabby at squash either. Whether it’s rounders or badminton, give me something to hit and I’ll have a great time (unsure what that says about me!)
But polo is one ball-hitting sport that I’m not so familiar with. I’d always assumed that it’s the type of activity that’s reserved for middle and upper class white people, predominantly men, who are looking for grandiose hobbies.
Then I received an invite to learn how to play polo with Lux Afrique, a high-end multimedia marketing platform that hosts the largest annual African polo festival in Europe. Now four years in the running, their polo day involves “an exhilarating match” between the top polo players from Africa, live performances, African food trucks and of course the chance to rub noses with some of the biggest names across the African diaspora and the continent itself.
Ahead of this event, which takes place on 30th July at Hurtwood Park Polo Club, I got the chance to meet the players and test my skills on a wooden horse. Initially, I thought, ‘Why am I not getting the chance to play polo on a real horse?’ Then as I mounted the stationary wooden version, polo stick in one hand and the other simulating holding reins, I quickly became thankful that I wasn’t experiencing the real thing.