Imphal: Team India-B (Manipur) defeated Argentina by 7-6 to lift the winner’s trophy of the 11th Manipur Polo International 2017 recently.
Captain Pradeepkumar, P Ojit and Bimol rose to the occasion to bring the score to a victorious 7-6.
Pradeepkumar said, “Since, Argentina is considered the strongest polo team in the world, it is a great honour and we feel immensely happy to have beaten them”.
Meanwhile, for the Argentine team captain Martin, losing was difficult to take in as traditionally they are very passionate about every game and they play to win.
Martin said, “We could not play like we had played against England as the Manipuri team did not allow us”.
George Shelton, Captain of England Polo Team had also appreciated Manipur’s playing style and had said, “It is a challenging game and they have a beautiful style of playing. It is simple and effective. We learned a lot in the first half of the game and we got a lot to make up in the second half. It is very special”.
The final match saw a record turnout of spectators who got the worth of their time as it proved to be a cracker of a match, played at a very fast pace with both the teams putting their all in offence and defense to secure a win.
Argentina, England, USA, Morocco along with two teams from India-A and India-B (including Manipuri players) were amongst the six teams that participated.
Although the modern game of Polo, commonly known as the ‘Sport of Kings’ was popularized by the British, but its origin is deep rooted in the state of Manipur where the game is locally known as the ‘Sagol Kangjei’ or ‘Kanjai-bazee’.
The tournament was organized from November 22-29 at the historic Mapal Kangjeibung Polo ground in Imphal city. A series of cultural performances by a group of Manipuri artists showcasing the rich culture of the state were also put up on the inauguration day.
The tournament is organized every year in Manipur as a part of the famous 10-day long Sangai Festival in the state.