27 November 2006

Polo Politics

Interesting article in the latest edition of Polo Times: A Lawyer's View of the EU Dilemma (the article is not online). Basically proves that the HPA, the sport's governing body, has been getting the law hopelessly wrong for the last few years since it lifted restrictions on non-EU players and thereby on every South American profession with a Spanish or Italian granny (i.e. all of them).
My understanding is that after the Bosman ruling the HPA went off and got an opinion from some distinguished QC who had no particular expertise in sports' law - who said the protections for English players were illegal - didn't wait to be challenged in court by a rich patron and just went ahead and changed the rules.
All credit to Polo Times which has been very vocal on this issue, not least as I suspect the editor's husband, himself a distinguished IP lawyer, has bothered to look into the issue. Maybe now they have published the advice of a leading sports' lawyer, the HPA might think again.... will they have the nerve?

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