Abuja - The Abuja Guards Brigade Polo Club on Tuesday said it would hold a polo tournament in commemoration of the 2014 Democracy Day which comes up on May 29.
The Captain of the club, Mustapha Junaidu, disclosed this in Abuja when the club’s management team visited the Chairman of the National Sports Commission (NSC), Tammy Danagogo.
He said the tournament, which would have competition in five categories of events, would also involve international professional players.
“Our Democracy Day Tournament will hold in Abuja from May 20 to May 25 with 16 teams participating and a total number of 20 games will be played during the six-day event.
“There are five categories of events which will be featured, and the first is the Guards Challenge Cup which is basically for beginners.
“The second category is the Guards Brigades Trophy which is open to teams from other states which are interested, while the Legislative Shield will be competed for in honour of the members of the National Assembly.
“The fourth category is the Democracy and President Cup, while the final one is the new one we just introduced which is the Argentine Ambassador’s Cup,’’ Junaidu said.
Earlier, the club’s Vice-President, Adamu Usman, said the club’s management was looking up to the NSC as its gateway to success by helping to promote its activities.
Usman said the club was seeking support from the NSC in the area of maintenance of their pitches and tracks.
“The maintenance of the pitch is very important in a polo game, or else, you will lose your horse and your well-being when you get injured. Our tracks also have to be in good shape.
“So, we are using this opportunity to ask the commission for a befitting club house that will house all what we need to promote the game,’’ he said.
The vice-president said the Abuja Polo Club also wanted to correct the perception that polo was a game for the rich.
“We want to start an enlightenment programme which will ginger us to remove the impression that polo is for the rich people alone.
“This is because polo does more than that. It promotes tourism and it has the ability to bridge the gap between our people here and the international world,’’ Usman said.
Responding, Danagogo, who is also the Sports Minister, expressed worry that polo was not one of the most popular sports in the country.
The minister charged the club’s management to come up with programmes which would help in publicising the sports more than what it was now.
“I expect polo to be more popular than it is now. So, I want you to come up with programmes which will make polo become a household name in Nigeria.
“We need more people to participate in polo and the NSC will give the needed support.
“Just put your complaints and challenges down on paper and forward it to the commission. We will encourage you, as well as your activities,’’ Danagogo said.(NAN)