Timaru Bike Polo Crew Hoping To Exceed Expectations

Postby Melissa_Theuriau on Wed 27/Sep/17 3:23pm

Five Timaruvians passionate about bike polo are travelling 13,721km in a bid to become world champions.

Richard Brown, Ash Manson, Karl Whittleston, Mike Broadhead and Sam Callander form a formidable squad - the only New Zealand team to qualify - and hope to bring an extra piece of luggage back with them from their week-long tournament in Lexington, Kentucky.

A strong effort at the Australasian championships, where they finished fourth, saw them earn a spot for the big showdown, following on from the 2016 world championships, which were held in Timaru.

"It's going to be a lot different to what it was like over here. We're going all that way to solely play polo and not run a tournament like last year.

"A lot of those 2016 pressures we don't have and that's going to make a big difference." team captain Manson said.

Top eight is their focus but Manson said if everything clicks throughout the week then they could easily finish higher.

The team is full of experience as Brown, Manson and Callander were part of the first crew to begin playing in Timaru back in 2011, while Broadhead and Whittleston joined in 2013 and picked up the skills quickly.

Their skills have improved massively since they first began, with the side able to compete with teams throughout the world.

"We just absolutely love it.

"We all get on well, we're a good group and have been building towards this event for a number of months now.

"We've had it as our target and once we qualified we've began training and gradually increased it as the tournament approached."

Manson said they were excited at facing quality polo players from across the globe.

"It's going to be a great challenge, one we're ready to embrace."

He said being able to return to the event a year after hosting it is great for the club.

"It shows we've carried on from the event we held hear and want to continue with our polo. There's been plenty of sacrifices from the whole team in the leadup but it's been worth it."

Twenty seven teams are attending the championships, with three pools of nine, so there's going to be plenty of competition for the team.

The Timaru team would love to beat is the Huntsmen from Australia, who pipped them at the Australasian event and are in their pool.

Training has increased as the tournament approached with the whole club helping to prepare the team.

"The other members, the community, Trust Aoraki, Pro Shed our other sponsors, everyone has been awesome and really got in behind the team to wish us well," Manson said.

They are a well rounded team with Broadhead the disruptive type, known to upset the opposition, Manson and Callander strategic players, and Brown and Whittleston allrounders.

Losing finalists from the Timaru event Call Me Daddy are hoping to claim their second crown in three years.

The tournament starts on October 4 New Zealand time and will be streamed live on YouTube.


https://www.stuff.co.nz/timaru-herald/s ... n-kentucky
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Melissa_Theuriau
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Re: Timaru Bike Polo Crew Hoping To Exceed Expectations

Postby jo on Wed 27/Sep/17 3:52pm

Awesome. :thumbsup:
Go Team!
jo
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"Windy"
Member for: 15 years 1 month

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