The least Hua Hin today can say is that this splendid international Elephant Polo Tournament was The Attraction of the Month of September.
Anantara General Manager Tim Boda and his team did an excellent job in organizing and catering for this international prestigious event. “The Elephant Whisperer”, as insiders now call Khun Tim will, unfortunately, leave the Anantara for the next step in his career at the end of this month.
The From September 5th to September 11th, twelve elite teams from all around the world descended upon the royal seaside town of Hua Hin in Thailand and battled it out for the championship of this unique sport. The tournament, held at Hua Hin’s Suriyothai army base, offered up a showcase of skillful play and plenty of memorable moments, on and off the pitch.
Audemars Piguet and Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas kicked off the 2011 King’s Cup Elephant Tornament.
Elephant Polo veteran team SOCO were pipped at the post in the final few seconds by The British Army in the first game of the season at the 10th Annual Kings Cup Elephant Polo Tournament in the royal seaside town of Hua Hin in Thailand.
Day three of the competition sees last year’s defending champions Audemars Piguet pitted against Mercedes Benz in an all-action match that could have gone either way just minutes into the second half!
A robust first half from the Audemars Piguet team, Captained by Peter Prentice along with the dynamic Kalaan brothers, Uday and Angaad, quickly reduced the handicap deficit to end up with a first half result of 6:6 thanks to a superb hat trick of three consecutive goals by the former captain of India’s horse polo world cup team – Uday Kalaan.
Semi finals day of play at the King’s Cup Elephant Polo tournament, saw Audemars Piguet and King Power deliver triumphant victories over a strong Sara Story Design and Kasikorn Bank to go head to head in the finals on Sunday.
After a fun and ferocious week of elephant polo, attended by teams from all over the world as well as special VIP guests, the final day of the tournament offered up a showcase of skillful play and plenty of memorable moments.
Heavy rain delayed the final match for more than an hour before a sudden death shoot out was called. The shoot out placed two stellar teams on the pitch, both of them full of storied elephant polo histories and exceptional players. Audemars Piguet’s Angaad and Uday Kalaan and rock solid Captain Peter Prentice proved too much for second-place King Power International, just as it had been for all the other teams.
Out of the three penalty shoot-outs, King Power scored two. Audemars Piguet players, the Kalaan brothers, scored their penalty shots and it was left to Prentice to place the winning shot which he did with ease to ensure a successful defence of the title.
The tournament ended with a prize-awarding ceremony, canapes, and plenty of Penfolds as the sun finally came out on what was arguably the most successful year ever.
The exciting weeklong event has not only been about fun and games either a generous 3.1 million baht was raised for charity at the Anantara Hua Hin gala dinner which hosted a gathering of top dignitaries and well known celebrities.
Among the Food and Beverage tents, worth mentioning were all, although some did not open on weekdays, the Anatara buffet was excellent, headed by Executive Chef Khun Kai of the Marriott, the motorbike wizard and his team displayed a selection of Asian creations, curries and healthy salads.
Penfolds and Siam Winery, together with Singha, Heineken and Chang took care of the ever returning thirst among spectators. Especially worth mentioning was the Dairy Queen caravan with Ice Cream, Smoothies and last but not least, real hot dogs with cheese and chillidogs. Miss that in Hua Hin.