Haiti Haitian American Haitian History Sports

Haiti's Polo Team Makes History with the Championship Trophy

Haiti Polo Team Courtesy of Kreyol Nation

How exciting is this?

Until 3 days ago, I had no idea Haiti had a polo team, and not only were they one of the top contenders but the history making participants, Captain Claude-Alix Bertrand , Akin Sotomi , Francisco Pizzarro  and Peter Laughlin performed so well, they ended up with the championship trophy.

Team Captain Claude-Alix Bertrand makes a victory lap with the Haitian flag after the defeat of the United States for the championship

According to Sentinel.ht

In the 1920’s and 30’s, Haiti was known for holding, and having the best in its territory for polo matches. Providing the ideal tropical climate, a friendly native population welcome travelers from all over the world, who docked in its ports to enjoy the best foods, culture, entertainment and sport. But in these times, since these times, Haiti had never fielded a national team of its own. It was a game described as “the sport of kings”, a nation born of slaves who revolted, it seemed implausible to play… but as we know through Haitian history, in the heart of the enslaved can be the heart of a king, that can become king. It is yet still remarkable that the history-making participation of the first Haitian team, in an official international tournament (USPA, et al recognized), would perform so well and in the end, hold up the championship trophy.

Secretary of State for Tourism, Jessie Diaz, with Team Haiti

The article continues with..

Haiti Team Captain Claude-Alix Bertrand described Sunday’s events as “serendipitous… everything was working in our way.” Jessie Diaz, the Secretary of State for Tourism in Haiti made the opening toss that was quickly engaged by Bertrand and led to a first score for the Haitian team in less than 30 seconds. “You can tell [the Americans] were just struck by then.” – continue reading here 

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