Polo match-thrower to miss US Open

  • A polo player who openly admitted to throwing a match will not be able to take part in the 2007 Stanford US Open, despite the ambiguity of the stance taken by the US Polo Association (USPA).

    Mexican-American player Memo Gracida, who plays for the La Herradura team, described losing the game at the International Polo Club Palm Beach (IPCPB) in Florida last month as a “strategic move” designed to win the Open (news, 29 March).

    The IPCPB immediately banned Mr Gracida from playing at the ground — the home of the US Open — for the rest of the year. But the USPA, which owns the tournament, overturned this, stating that Mr Gracida had not broken any rules.

    As H&H went to press on Monday, the USPA refused to make any further comment on the situation. But Mr Gracida’s team has been removed from the list of entries in the Open that started on 30 March.

    USPA officials also declined to discuss whether they might adopt a new rule similar to that of Britain’s Hurlingham Polo Association that requires teams to “try to win” or face disciplinary action.

    This news story was first published in Horse & Hound (12 April, ’07)

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