Australia, the world’s largest polocrosse playing nation, is continuing to show signs of an effort to promote and grow the sport as the promotional campaigns for two events get underway. Firstly, on the 9th and 10th of November there is the Warren Blackwood Waste Polocrosse Classic in Western Australia, which has top prize money of $6,000, and then in July 2014 the various state representative teams will all gather in Darwin to contest the Australian National Championships.
Australian has always run large and successful polocrosse events, including two World Cups, as befits a country that has been playing the game since the 1930’s. It has well established polocrosse clubs who own their own grounds and can afford to run large scale events without the need for significant sponsorship or spectator income. Aside from the two world cups, which did receive significant promotion, it has often appeared satisfied with the level of sponsorship and coverage that they receive through local established links and has not made promoting their events and the sport to a wider audience and attracting in new spectators and sponsors. This is despite probably being the only country with suficient resources to make a significant difference in driving forwards the promotion and growth of the sport in global terms.
However, the winds of change have been blowing for a little while, with events like the Bombers Southern 50 making far more effort to promote itself and attract sponsors and spectators and now other events seem to be following suit. The Warren Blackwood Waste Polocrosse Classic is hosted by the Kojonup Polo and Polocrosse club in Western Australia and with a dedicated Facebook page and large prize money on offer it seems to be focused on both getting teams from across the country to come and play and getting people in and watching, though it is not charging for spectators.
The Australian National Championships has always been a large event, hosted every two years by one of Australia’s State Polocrosse Associations, and that association will normally work closely with local authorities and local media and companies to put on a successful event. However, for the event that is being held in Darwin in July 2015 they now have a dedicated, professionally developed website to promote the event and attract in more spectators and sponsors. Indeed there is an entire page dedicated to sponsorship packages. with the top package of event legacy sponsor being offered for up to $30,000. The Northern Territory Polocrosse Association seem confident they can deliver an event to exceed previous National Champiopnships and are promising live streaming of the matches during the event. If it’s going to be that good we might just have to pop out and watch it in person…