Tempawan Cup: Malaysia vs Hong Kong

This weekend’s RSPC Tempawan Cup will feature a test match between a visiting Hong Kong team and the Malaysian national team.  With the SEA Games now likely to be played as a 6-goal tournament, Sunday’s test match at the Royal Selangor Polo Club will be the Harimau’s first test on home ground since February’s FIP World Cup playoffs in Thailand.

The Hong Kong team will provide good opposition to the Malaysian side.

Matt O’Leary is a 3-goal player who has been establishing and transforming  the Reignwood Polo Club in Beijing  for the last four China polo seasons.

An accomplished horseman, player and coach, Matt has spent 10 years in the sport since he was introduced by an old friend and becoming hooked after his second hit. Matt has owned and run polo academies in Melbourne and Brisbane, Australia and has played in many terrific locations around the world. Matt has developed lifelong friendships through his polo adventures and confirms there is no better way to see the world.

Matt has two brothers who play who are also very talented players.  He also is deeply interested in economics, politics, playing backhands, winning pony prizes and loves owning quality polo ponies.

Shane Boyd is a 2-goal professional from New Zealand that is now based in Singapore where he is the resident polo professional at the Singapore Polo Club.

Shane started play at the age of 18 out of Waimai polo club in New Zealand.  He has managed to get his name scratched onto nearly every major trophy New Zealand has, including the New Zealand Open twice.   He was selected to represent New Zealand at the FIP World Cup and was a member of the Hong Kong Snow Polo squad in 2013.   Polo has taken him all over the world England, Hungary, China, Australia, South Africa and now is working and playing here in Singapore.

Before moving to Singapore, Shane established his Chinese credentials spending a few years working at the Tianjin Metropolitan Polo Club in China.

Shane will have some local knowledge to his advantage, having had a good run in the Malaysian Open with Head Hunters and the RSPC Open with La Sarita in 2016.   He also spent a month in Kuala Lumpur in February 2017.

Kwan Lo was inspired to start polo by his late wife.  She actually foresaw that one day he would be hooked by this game.  He read a newspaper article on polo and the rest as one might say is the beginning of a wonderful adventure in the world of polo.

Kwan is the founder and inspiration behind Aquilar Polo Club that he has set up in Sussex, UK.   “I just wanted set up a team to play all over the UK. There were no “grand plans” behind it, other than trying to win all of the tournaments and trophies…. And actually, we were not that far from our goal, since we won 95% of the games over a three-year period.”

Kwan started his industrial gloves business “… by accident, like most of the businesses in the world. A neighbour at the time was looking for disposable gloves for his factory where he was the MD there. I was bored with working in Investor Relations (part of financial PR) in London and he promised he would buy from me if I could source it cheaper. That was how the adventure started. I then packed my job in, boarded a plane to Thailand and went to see a glove factory, that was how I learned to make gloves. Of course, it was never as rosy and indeed as easy as one might imagine. After years of hardship, we now supply our products all over the world. Supplying to one quarter of all the mines in South Africa and our customers stretch from Australia to the US, covering many European countries in the middle.”

Entrepreneurial business owner, Richard Cameron began playing Polo in October 2009 and has since been deeply involved in the sport. As a member of both the Australian Polo and Windsor Polo Clubs, Richard is trained by nationally renowned professional 3 goal player, Adam Meally. Along with Richard’s avid love for horses and the sport, he is passionate about networking among international teams and is a strong ambassador for polo within the Asia Pacific region.

Richard has been part of the Hong Kong POLO team from inception.  Separate to the game, originally from Sydney, Australia; currently living in Hong Kong, Richard is building on his existing corporate background to include 15 years of strategic business development across a broad range of industry sectors including IT and telecommunications, professional services.

Malaysia’s national coach Federico Bachmann has made an interesting selection in pairing 3-goalers Tengku Shazril with Saladin Mazlan.  0-goalers Muhd Faisal (Cupita) and Abd Rashid Hasnan in the side. Rashid has just returned from a month of training in Argentina.

Fede will have Saladin Mazlan and Tengku Shazril will be playing together as the main pairing of a Malaysian side for the first time.  National Captain Shaik Reismann had been expected to lead the Malaysian side.  Instead he will play with the Royal Selangor Polo Club side that will play against Malaysia and Hong Kong in warm-up matches on Thursday and Saturday respectively.

National Coach Federico Bachmann has been in Malaysia since the beginning of April, working with the SEA Games squad in Kuala Lumpur and Pekan.

The Argentine said, “I wanted to try a different combination.  I know how Along (Tengku Shazril) and Shaik work and I wanted to see Along and Saladin together as another combination.”

RSPC and RMPA President Dato’ Mohamed Moiz will play with national team captain Shaik Reismann, Dato’ Mohamad Zekri Ibrahim and Peter Abisheganaden in an experienced RSPC side that could give both opponents some problems.

Dave Savage, President of AsiaWorldPolo and leader of the Hong Kong team said, “It is a pleasure and an honour to be invited to compete against the Malaysian team for the 2017 Tempawan Cup at the beautiful Royal Selangor Polo Club.  We are looking forward to what is sure to be a challenging and exciting tournament against strong competition and are delighted to have with us our fans and supporters who have travelled all the way from Hong Kong and beyond to be here to cheer us on.

We are also thankful for the valuable ongoing support from our sponsors who make this all possible, in particular for this event they are Option Group, Macey and Son’s Auctioneers and Valuers, Pegasus Agriculture, Aquila, Connexion D’Art and Jet Solution. Each step we take brings us a little closer to our dream of bringing polo back to Hong Kong and the Sport of Kings to the people.  Wishing everybody a polorific weekend and may the best team win!

Full Test Match Series Schedule

Friday 28th April                                                         Results
9:00 am: Royal Selangor Polo Club vs Malaysia       5 – 10

Saturday 29th April
3:00 pm Royal Pahang Polo Cup – Ayzak Plate
4:30 pm: Royal Selangor Polo Club vs Hong Kong  7 – 4 1/2/

Sunday 30th April
3:00 pm Royal Pahang Polo Cup – Ayzak Plate
3:30 pm VIP Champagne Reception
4:00 pm High Tea
4:30 pm Grand Final of RSPC Tempawan Cup: Malaysia vs Hong Kong  9 – 4 1/2
6:00 pm Treading-In and Cork Drops
6:30 pm Prize-Giving
7:00 pm End

Champions: Malaysia
Runners-Up: Royal Selangor Polo Club
2nd Runners-Up: Hong Kong

The Tempawan Cup is a challenge trophy donated by En. Ahmad Mustapha Hassan in 1994.  It is sponsored this year by: