The King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament by Anantara Hotels & Resorts has proudly received the Silver Award for Sports CSR Initiative of the Year in the Asia 2016 SPIA Sports Industry Awards at a glittering ceremony in Bangkok, attended by more than 300 sports professionals from across the region.
Organised by Sport360° and MMC Sportz, in partnership with the Thai Ministry of Tourism and Sports and the Sports Authority of Thailand, the SPIA Asia 2016 Awards received a 208 entries from 17 countries for the 19 awards categories. The awards applauded sports industry leaders that demonstrate a balance between business, community and environment, with the King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament well-deserving of its Silver accolade.
Since its inception in 2001, the King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament has built a reputation as one of Thailand’s biggest, most famous and unique charity events. In 2016 a generous sum of THB 15 million was raised for various elephant charity projects, bringing the total raised to date to more than US$1,300,000 (THB 46 million).
The welfare of the elephants that participate in the King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament is of paramount importance, with strict rules ensuring that the pachyderms are well cared for at all times. By imposing a “no micro-chip, no game” rule, Anantara guarantees that all participating elephants have been domestically bred and not captured from the wild or smuggled in from neighbouring countries.
All proceeds from the event are donated to conservation and welfare projects that help all of Thailand’s elephants through The Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation, which supports inspirational projects such as the world’s first Thai Elephant Assisted Therapy Project, positive reinforcement elephant training workshops, mahout community development initiatives, and wild elephant conservation.
The 2017 King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament will be held beside the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok, next to Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort from 8th – 12th March 2016. Four days of captivating elephant polo matches will see 10 teams from all over the world, including Miss Thailand, New Zealand All Black rugby players and professional polo players, battle it out for the coveted King’s Cup and raise even more money for Thailand’s domestic and wild elephant populations.