Italian-Argentinian polo player Camila Rossi remembers the odd looks the boys gave her when she was in youth tournaments with them. American Erica Gandomcar doesn’t forget her failed attempts to convince the leaders of her country’s polo association that they should organize a world-class championship for women.
These women talked about the hurdles they faced to play a sport dominated by men, as they enlist with another 22 to test their horses outside Buenos Aires. Saturday is the opening day for the first women’s polo world championship.
Argentina, United States, England, Ireland, Brazil and Italy will face off at the Campo Argentino de Polo, which is considered a sacred place for the sport. Tickets are free, as part of the efforts to make women’s polo more popular.
“Polo has been dominated by men for a long time. And now women in general, all over the world, are being heard,” said Gandomcar, who is part of a committee of the United States’ polo association. “For years we tried to organize a women’s polo tournament. This is a dream come true.”