Next week top New Zealand professional polo players will convene at Mystery Creek Polo Club for a fundraising match with the proceeds donated to Cambridge Riding for the Disabled (RDA).

The Ōhaupō-based polo club is owned by polo players John-Paul and Nina Clarkin and Simon Keyte, John-Paul's cousin.

John-Paul and Nina have been hosting end of year memorial polo matches in remembrance of John-Paul's father, Paul Clarkin, who founded the Mystery Creek Polo Club but died when he fell while playing in England in 2004.

"We introduced a memorial event for him that has culminated in a Christmas event and we also introduced the charity side of things, which has been a great way for us to give back to charities associated with polo and to the local community," said John-Paul.


This year's event is on Friday, December 20 and admission is $10 for adults, $30 for a car load and children are free.

The gates open at 4pm with the first match, played by local polo families and personalities at 4.30pm.

There will be a Audi-versus-horse sprint race with Nina behind the wheel of the Audi. There will be a ladies' champagne race - whoever gets to the bottle of bubbles first gets it, and there will also be a best dressed competition.

At around 6pm the main match of the event will start and a number of top New Zealand polo players will be taking part in the 20-goal match.

The event has been sponsored by Emma Osment owner of Hus, a Cambridge-based homewares store, and dairy and farming machinery producer company DeLaval.

There will be drinks and nibbles.

Cambridge RDA members and representatives will be wearing their RDA t-shirts and will have information pamphlets about the organisation.

Cambridge RDA secretary Hilary McPherson says the money raised will go towards running their programme which relies on voluntary support and donations.


"We have to fundraise to be able to look after our 10 horses and for things such as their feed and vet bills," said Hilary.

The organisation has been operating for over 25 years in Cambridge and today their therapeutic riding programme helps over 100 riders in the community.

Early next year they will be seeking people to sponsor a horse for a year. The money would go towards that horse's upkeep.