Katsina agog for 2016 MTN International Polo Festival, Buhari expected
The ancient city of Katsina is bubbling with excitement ahead of this weekend’s prestigious MTN Katsina Polo carnival. It is tagged as the biggest Polo event for years.
The competition, which is the most competitive polo event in the country, will hold at the legendary Usman Nagogo Polo Grounds in Katsina and will attract all the big names in the nation’s polo association.
The tournament is expected to have the presence of President Muhammadu Buhari as Special Guest of Honour. He will be accompanied by His Royal Highness, Emir of Katsina, and Life President of the Nigerian Polo Association, Alhaji Abdulmumuni Kabir Usman.
According to the Secretary of the Nigerian Polo Federation (NPF), Baba Kyari, the tournament will electrify polo enthusiasts for eight days of top class polo with a long list of political bigwigs, diplomats and captains of industry expected to grace the occasion. The Katsina grand tourney will mark the commencement of the annual Polo season. The Katsina Polo fiesta enjoys the solid backing of ICT giant, MTN Nigeria.
According to MTN’s General Manager, Consumer Marketing, Richard Iweanoge, confirmed the readiness of the company as sponsors in Katsina this year, adding that MTN will continue to promote the noble game of polo and sports generally in the country.
“The game of polo requires purpose, focus, consistency and precision. These attributes are symbolic of MTN’s distinctive approach to adding values to lives through initiatives like the polo game,” he said.
Katsina Polo Club Captain, Prince Umar Kabir in his response to MTN’s gesture, thanked the ICT Company for its commitment and support for the noble game. According to him, the glamorous annual festival is guaranteed to continually maintain its prime rating and become increasingly popular in the years to come.
Revered as the ‘Home of Nigerian Polo’, MTN/Katsina’2016 attracts a record line up of popular Nigerian polo teams. They would be complemented with the participation of renowned international players from Europe, Argentina and South Africa. Competing teams for the tourney are expected from Kaduna, Zaria, Sokoto, Abuja, Keffi, Bauchi, Minna, Jos, Yola, Port Harcourt and EL Kanemi Polo Warriors from Maiduguri.
Over 35 teams, an unprecedented number of 800 thoroughbred horses and over 300 battle ready players have been confirmed for this fiesta. The tournament will also attract special delegations and enthusiasts from Benin, Niger Republics, Ghana, Mali and Burkina Faso.
Prizes like the General Hassan Katsina Cup, MTN Cup, Talba Cup, Coomasie Cup, the President’s Cup and the Nigerian Cup, being the biggest reward, will be keenly contested for. Others are the Governor’s Cup, Nagogo Memorial Cup, Maidabino Cup, Dikko Memorial Cup, the Beginners’ Cup and Veterans Cup among other individual honours.