Passion for a true Australian-made sport is what keeps the Goondiwindi Polocrosse Club alive.
Over the past six years, drought, floods and tough economic times have taken a toll on the Club.
It has felt the effect and membership has dropped from almost 40 players to just one in 2017.
But what this Club lacks in numbers, it more than makes up for in passion for the action-packed equestrian sport with player Michelle Smith, travelling around South-East Queensland and further afield to fly the flag for Goondiwindi.
Ms Smith and a dedicated group of volunteers will host the annual Tait Auto Group Polocrosse Carnival at Goondiwindi Showground this weekend, bringing much needed funds to Club.In 2017, the Goondiwindi Polocrosse Carnival is a multi-horse carnival which will attract a larger number of players as they try out young stock coming through or horses new to the sport. It is perfect timing with the State Championships at Chinchilla in early September.
With more than 400 players and supporters expected, there will be flow-on economic benefits for the local community. Players and their horses are expected to make the trek from New South Wales, South-East Queensland and Western Queensland to compete. Although more than 45 teams are expected to take to the field over the weekend, Goondiwindi Polocrosse Club Secretary and Treasurer Ms Smith said it is a big change from the 90s when Goondiwindi hosted the Queensland State Championships and had 98 teams attend. With almost 600 players battling for club pride“the dust could be seen from Boggabilla,” she said.
Ms Smith is encouraging people from the community to come and support the club, see the adrenalin charged sport and think about having a go themselves in the future. Entry is free for spectators to watch the fast paced action and experience the atmosphere of polocrosse.
She is modest about her role and prefers to acknowledge other contributors to the club, including David Tait who has been their major sponsor for many years, donating thousands of dollars to the club.