Regular readers of our magazine will know that we at Prestige Thailand, love a good polo match. While most will be more than familiar with the customary tournaments that take place in Thailand on a yearly basis — cue Thai Polo, Pink Polo and Beach Polo — there’s another that rings with particular significance every time it comes round. Hosted every two years by the Thailand Polo Association, the All Asia Cup constantly garners great interest from various Asian countries, and is considered one of the largest polo tournaments to take place in the region.
This year, the 5th All Asia Cup 2020 is taking place from February 2 – 9, 2020 at VS Sports Club. From who’s in the competition, to what highlights to get excited for, here’s everything we know about the event.
The Opening Event
For a tournament as large as this one, it comes as little surprise that the opening event would be nothing short of spectacular. Presided over by the Secretary of the Thailand Polo Association Thawatjai Thavisri the event was attended by siblings Apichet and Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha, who were the Thai national team. They were joined by representatives of other prominent national teams from different countries, including HRH Princess Azemah Bolkiah, HH Prince Bahar Bolkiah, and Shilai Liu.
The Competing Teams
This year’s tournament was joined by six different countries, who competed under two groups. Group A includes Thailand, Brunei and the Philippines, while Group B is comprised of teams from China, South Korea, and Indonesia. Who’s representing Thailand? A team of great talents including Nattapong Pratumlee, Thanasin Chuawangkham, Satit Wongkras, Ploy Bhinsaeng, and Nutthadith Sila-Amornsak — led, of course, by the Srivaddhanaprabha siblings.
The Results so far
The tournament kicked off with thrilling opening matches, where China beat South Korea by 6-1, followed by a match between Thailand and Brunei, with Thailand winning 10-5(½). Matches will continue, with the final round set to take place this Sunday February 9, 2020 at VS Sports Club.
What’s the Hype?
The All Asia Cup tournament stands out as a major equestrian event in not just Thailand alone, but in all of Asia, and is considered by many polo players to be the of similar standard as the Asian Games.
Initiated by Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha — founder and former president of the Thailand Polo Association — the tournament was intended to be a means of raising acknowledgement of the sport in the surrounding region, while elevating the level of sportsmanship to meet global standards. It also is a way of promoting polo in Thailand, and offering a stage for Thai polo players to compete with international teams.
Other Tournaments to Eye
Asides from the main tournaments between the participating teams at the 5th All Asia Cup 2020, we’re also looking forward to the International Ladies’ Polo Tournament 2020, which will take place from February 22 – 29, 2020 at VS Sports Club. The event is championed by Ploy Bhinsaeng, who herself is also a key part of Thailand’s women’s national team. Following that is the Thailand Polo Championship 2020, which will be held from March 7 – 8, at the Siam Polo Park. This championship was created to help improve the potential of local Thai polo players, and give them a training ground so they can compete on an international level in the future. Another event to get excited for is The Ambassador Cup 2020, taking place from March 21 – 28, 2020 at VS Sports Club. This tournament aims to foster relationships and build a strong network among various participating countries for some diplomatic fun.
The 5th All Asia Cup 2020 is sponsored by Singha Corporation Co Ltd, King Power Duty Free, Thai Air Asia Co Ltd., BEC-Tero Entertainment, Siam Commercial Bank, Samart Corporation Co Ltd, Pullman Bangkok King Power Hotel, Plan B Media Co Ltd, Boot Room Apparel Co Ltd (Ari Gear), and the Bangpakok Hospital Group.