Nigerian polo riders in action
The grounds of the Lagos Polo Club were Thursday awash with controversy over the status of the tournament the club had put in place as foreign professionals that are supposed to take part in the competition are no where to be found.
Not only that, the club has become a rife ground for speculations and witch-hunting as officials look out to see if there is going to be any
member or groom in the club who would play the apostate by giving out the places the club is hiding the foreign internationals that they had
brought in to play in the tournament.
The Lagos Polo Club, against the rules of polo, brought in foreign professionals without recourse to the guidelines of the sport, as laid
down in the international rule books; and in the local variant of it made by the sport’s controlling body in Nigeria, NPF.
Two days ago, on Wednesday, after Nigeria’s immigration authorities got wind of the fact that the club had foreign professionals in the country that had got in with tourist visas but are on a working visit of the country, they sent in their agents to invite such players for re-briefing and possible easing-out of the country, should they be found to have breached any of the immigration laws of the land.
Sources say in swift reaction, the club told staff and grooms that no one must disclose where these professionals are being housed. One of
the grooms who spoke on telephone yesterday said things are going wrong in the sport if the number one club in the land has now resorted
to hiding the locations that the foreign professionals for the tournament are. “They are looking at everyone with suspicion around the club premises.
They think people are going to rat on them. I don’t think this is the way it should be. It was never like this in the past. I mean if something is against the rules, why do it? We used to be the top club.
The whole country would focus on us whenever we have a competition. But now it seems they are focusing on us for the wrong reasons. “In the past, before a competition, all the participating foreign professionals would be in the club ground before the tournament to
practice. It used to be a delight. Now the delight is gone from polo tournaments,” said the source.
Thursday, immigration agents returned to the club to see if they would spot any of the foreign professionals. They left the club premises