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126/365 – Polo

Polo is a team sport played on horseback in which the objective is to score goals against an opposing team. Sometimes called, “The Sport of Kings“, it was highly popularized by the British.

Players score by driving a small white plastic or wooden ball into the opposing team’s goal using a long-handled mallet.

The traditional sport of polo is played at speed on a large grass field up to 300 yards long, and each polo team consists of four riders and their mounts.

In arena polo, only three players are required per team and the game usually involves more maneuvering and shorter plays at lower speeds due to space limitations of the arena.

The modern game is played on horses. Polo is played professionally in 16 countries. It was formerly, but is not currently, an Olympic sport.

History

The game first played in Persia (Iran) at dates given from the 5th century BC, or much earlier, to the 1st century AD and originated there, polo was at first a training game for cavalry units, usually the king’s guard or other elite troops.

Sultan Qutb-ud-din Aibak, the Turkic Emperor of North India, ruled as an emperor for only four years, from 1206 to 1210 but died accidentally in 1210 playing polo.

Later on Polo was passed from Persia to other parts of Asia including the Indian subcontinent and China, where it was very popular during the Tang Dynasty and frequently depicted in paintings and statues. Valuable for training cavalry, the game was played from Constantinople to Japan by the Middle Ages. Known in the East as the Game of Kings.

The name polo is said to have been derived from the Tibetan word “pulu“, meaning ball.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polo

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Categories: General Knowledge, Sports
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