Excitement builds for the 18th Emirates Open Polo Championship International

December 5, 2018


Under the Patronage of HH Sheikh Falah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan



The long wait is over. The 18th Emirates Open Polo Championship International, one of the most highly anticipated events on the UAE Polo calendar, will be held at the Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club (GRPC) from December 10th to 21st.

Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Falah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Founder and Chairman of the Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club, the prestigious tournament carries a rich purse of half a million AED in prize money.

This year’s renewal of the Emirates Open Polo Championship, a 14-handicap category event, will feature five teams – UAE Polo Team, Abu Dhabi Polo Team, Ghantoot Polo Team, Desert Palm Polo Team and Al Habtoor Polo Team.

Sheikh Falah, a keen polo enthusiast and doyen of the game himself, has given the Ghanoot Polo Team, a Royal seal of approval, and nominated Yousef Bin Dasmal as its skipper.

“I believe that the 2018 Emirates Open Polo Championship will live up to all expectations and be just as exciting, if not more, than the previous tournaments,” said Sheikh Falah.

“I wish all the teams the best of success and I’m sure we will witness some competitive and entertaining polo matches at Ghantoot.

“I genuinely thank all our esteemed partners and sponsors, the club management, volunteers and fans for their continuous support of the Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club, for without you we would not be able to host such prestigious events as the Emirates Open,” Sheikh Falah said.

Ahmed Al Nuaimi, Managing Director of the Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club, added:

“We are delighted to host the first major tournament of the season at Ghantoot. The Emirates Open is also a special event as it brings out the best in the players. “We look forward to watching some exciting and entertaining mates over the next two weeks here at Ghantoot,” he said.

“The Emirates Open is a tournament with a rich history and has ceaselessly delivered the highest quality of polo and I’m sure that we can look forward to some very competitive matches.

“The standard of the sport is growing year by year in the UAE and this is very encouraging for club’s like ours to host a sport that is growing not just in terms of the players, but also the quality of polo horses. It all helps to raise the bar and ensure the successful growth of the sport in the UAE.”

Speaking at the official press conference ahead of the tournament, Jad Elias, Vice President Sales – Maserati, Al Tayer Motors, commented: “As the exclusive car sponsor of the Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club, Premier Motors along with Maserati is pleased to be associated with the Emirates Open Polo Championship.

“We eagerly look forward to the matches that will be held as part of the first competitive tournament of this season, which promises to close 2018 with an exciting sign-off.

“The 2019 Maserati Ghibli, Quattroporte and the Levante will be displayed at the event giving equestrian sport lovers a chance to take a closer look at the luxurious and sporty vehicles,” Elias added.

Abu Dhabi Sports Council is Governing Partner and Premier Motors – Maserati, the Official Car.


Akram Kanso, General Manager Business Development, Sobha Realty said: ‘It’s an absolute pleasure for Sobha Realty to be part of Emirates Open Polo Championship which commences in the next few days.

“We are the official partner for the Ghantoot Racing & Polo club and are very excited with this association. Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club is responsible for hosting some very coveted events throughout the year and The Emirates Open Polo Championship is regarded as one of the region’s most important polo events.

“The event will create the opportunity to showcase the pinnacle of talent in the UAE and region and with the tournament gathering together professionals and amateurs alike to help surge the sport’s popularity.’

Each year the Emirates Open Polo Championship attracts a host of high profile players, prominent guests, ambassadors, dignitaries, and sponsors.


At A Glance

  • What:            Emirates Open Polo Championship International
  • When:           December 10 to 21
  • Where:          Ghantoot Racing & Polo Club
  • Website:



UAE Polo Team

  • Shaikkha Maitha Binto Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum
  • Nacho Acuna           4
  • Tommy Panelo        4
  • Feck Potobsky         6


Abu Dhabi Polo Team

  • Faris Al Yabhouni   0
  • Santiago Gomez     4
  • Guy Gibrat                5
  • Hugo Barabucci      5


Ghantoot Polo Team

  • Yousef Bin Dasmal 1
  • Bautista Beguerie   4
  • Cesar Crespo           4
  • Martin Donovan     5


Al Habtoor Polo Team

  • Habtoor Al Habtoor 1
  • Tomas Iriarte           4
  • Justo Chitinio           3
  • Tomas Beresfor      6


Desert Palm Polo Team

  • Rashid Al Bawardi 2
  • Juan Pedro Marty Heguy 2
  • Maxi Malacalza       3
  • Ramiro Cordero      5



  • January 25:              Red Crescent Charitable Polo Match
  • March 13-25:          HH President of UAE Polo Cup
  • April 6:                      British Polo Day



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