Thank you to Brenda de Boer for the interview, click the photo to see the web page of Brenda
Amazing Charity Event in La Ensenada
After some postponed dates in a rainy Argentine polo season, the 28 goal Ladies Polo match was finally played on Monday 7th December. In the beautiful club of La Ensenada, two teams of the best players prepared to
play an exceptional match. The Argentine side of Mumy Bellande, Paola Martinez and Marianella Castagnola was certainly a trip down memory-lane for these girls to play together, just as they did, many times, a dozen years ago when Ladies Polo was still very new. Their team was completed by their friend Ina Lalor. They all enjoyed a day of true friendship.With Paola Martinez as the star and strong back, they are still leading in the feminine sport.
On the other side of the field, two of today’s stars, Lia Salvo and Hazel Jackson prepared their team with Sarah Wiseman and Clara Cassino to compete with the Argentine team and their long history within the sport of polo.
The day included finals, demonstrations, polo for kids and the best women in the world playing. The amazing scenery was the backdrop of palm trees, elegant lounges and rhythmic music.The girls presented gracious open and flowing polo, displaying their skills in a very even match. The teams very well organised and worked efficiently.
Finally, the Argentine experienced foursome won by one goal. What a pleasure to see this quality of horses, sportsmanship and the increasing high level of ladies polo. We are looking forward to the next match!
Polo Lady interviewed Samy Perusi:
Who organised the tournament, had the idea and why?
I organised it myself. We usually organise an exhibition of ladies polo in La Ensenada every year. This time I thought about having good players and by chance they were in Argentina at that time ad were happy to participate. Initially, they teams were different; with other women players- for example, Caroline Anier was going to be there. However, due to the rain we had to change dates and other women players came, like Hazel (Jackson) and we also had Paola (Martínez). The idea was to organise a good high handicap match. There had not been a 28-goal match (ladies) organised before. I think the maximum had been a 24-goal in England.
What charity was it for? Why a Charity Organisation?
The exhibition was part of a Volunteer Tournament in La Ensenada. These tournaments have already been played nine times. In this tournament, a mixed cup is organised and the last day, there is an exhibition between Boca Polo Team and another team; this year it was San Lorenzo Polo Team with an exhibition of kids’ polo and one of ladies polo. I took the opportunity to bring up the possibility of organising a high handicap exhibition as I have a very good relationship with all the players and I could contact them for to play. The event was organised for charity, not only for ladies polo. The benefiting charities were BOCA SOCIAL, FUNDACION SUEÑOS Y ESPERANZAS and FUNDACION PADRE LORENZO MASSA.
Was it difficult to create such high level teams? Did the girls like the idea of playing for charity?
They were so enthusiastic well and therefore were eager to do it. They had not thought of an exhibition like this for a long time, it was a challenge and a good match. Generally women players play in low handicap teams, either because the tournament has a limited handicap or because they play for a sponsor. So, playing with players at the same level is like playing a match at the Argentine Open, where they are all stars and you can see that clearly on the field. Teams were organised according to ‘compatibility’. For example, Lia, Hazel and Clarita have a good relationship and the same occurred with Paola, Mumy and Mainela who already knew each other. This is good as the positions on the field must be practical.
What was the after-party like? The roast and the concert? Were there many people?
It was amazing. We usually finish with a party at La Ensenada. It must be THE party of the year. Polo people dance there. A music band that makes cover versions, Los Bonitos, play music you can hear on the streets, not only in places with a polo atmosphere. We always have fireworks to close the party. The final at La Ensenada is undoubtedly one of the ‘crowning glories’ of events held throughout the Argentine polo season. Going to La Ensenada invites you to share the party.
Escorihuela Gastón Winery always joins us. There was a bar and catering service. It was a big party!