Morgan Park known as world's best
WARWICK has the best polocrosse facility in the world, not just Australia, according to national president Gil Mathie.
Mr Mathie was in Warwick at the weekend for the NTI Rosebowl competition and yesterday’s Polocrosse Association of Australia board meeting.
This was the first time the board had met in Warwick, with most meetings held in Sydney.
Mr Mathie said people from other countries agreed Morgan Park was the best facility in the world.
“They don’t even question it as the best,” he said.
The board discussed next year’s nationals on April 23-29 at Morgan Park, which are expected to attract 60 teams from all states.
While he admits Tasmania and South Australia are not as strong as the other states, Mathie said the South Australians would have a strong junior team in Warwick.
He praised the coach, manager and players who represented Australia in the 2011 World Cup in the United Kingdom.
“They were very good ambassadors for the sport,” he said.
Next year, Australia will start planning for the 2015 World Cup in South Africa with a view to turning this year’s third placing into victory at the fourth cup.
Morgan Park was venue for the first two cups, in 2003 and 2007.
Mathie said there was a strong possibility the 2019 event could be held in Australia.
“New Zealand will host a quadrangular series in 2013 but getting enough horses for a (NZ) World Cup is too big a job,” he said.
That means the cup is likely to alternate between Australia, United Kingdom and South Africa.
Australian Sports Commission representative Jonathan Grady was at the polocrosse on Sunday and at the board meeting, to assist the association in formulating a new strategic plan.
“I was blown away by the skill of the athletes and horses. It is more physical than I expected,” he said.
“Polocrosse receives some funding from the commission and we are keen to encourage pathways between horse sports.”
Association national executive officer Fiona Nixon said Equitana in Sydney on November 10-13 would be a chance to showcase the sport.
“The four members of the World Cup team from New South Wales will host education sessions at Equitana,” Nixon said.
The exhibition will be part of the Riverina District Pavilion.
Nixon was on her first visit to Morgan Park for the Rosebowl carnival.
“I was blown away with the goodwill and community spirit,” she said. “There is a great sense of pride in Warwick polocrosse; the standard of play at the weekend was high.”