An effective Patron
Simon Arber acknowledges the importance of a united approach to the game through his team’s name Four Quarters, understanding that polo is a game in which all four players have their importance. He tells us that: “I started playing Polo ten years ago with my wife Romilla. We were both complete novices with both polo and horses. We started at a local club run by David Heaton Ellis who sadly died of motor neurons disease not long after. He made every part of the game fun. Even falling off!”
During the last decade, Arber has been building his reputation as an effective patron in a staggered approach, but solidly achieving his objectives. “We played low goal for the first three years and then I did a charity 12 goal and found it really exciting”. From thereon, Arber relied on the talent of pro Tom Morley to evolve in the game. “I have played almost all my polo with Tom. The only time we’ve not played together is when he was injured, losing the use of one eye,” stated the 59-year-old IT entrepreneur.
“In the last couple of years we have had a fair degree of success” Since his arrival in the world of polo, Arber has generated a solid structure that was quickly recognised by others. As noted by Horacio Laffaye in his reference book "The Polo Encyclopaedia", Arber and his team won several of the main trophies in the British medium handicap.
-Which triumphs are your biggest highlights in these years?
"In the last couple of years we have had a fair degree of success, winning the Royal Windsor twice, as well as many other 12, 15 and 18 goal tournaments at Guards, Cowdray and Cirencester. My wife also played the 12, 15 and 18 goal tournaments with success in the Coworth Park Challenge and the Autumn Nations at Guards and the Autumn Cup and Tyro at Cowdray amongst others. The best victory so far was the first time we won the Royal Windsor in 2014. After the game, when we were told the Queen was presenting the trophy, I thought people were joking. The second time we won I knew what to expect."
-You started 2018 winning the HPA National Club Championships for the third time. What are your feelings?
"I’m very pleased to win the National three years in a row, especially as we did it with the players we play with in the summer season. This was Tom Morley’s first full arena season. Most of the games were really close. More than half of them were won by only one goal and several went to an extra chukka. I wish polo was always like that."
“To play all year and have success at different levels you need to be well organised” -What is your plan for the 2018 season?
"This year we will be playing both the 12 and 15 goal with our own teams. Me, Four Quarters Orange and my wife, Four Quarters Black. We are sharing the 18 goal team. We both have a great mix of British and Argentinian players. I’m really looking forward to it. My wife Romilla (and me to a lesser extent) are continuing to do all that we can to get the Home Office to see sense in respect of player and groom visas. She has been amazing. Using all her skills as a lawyer and business woman. She has had to deal with some really awkward people but just gets on with it."
-What is the secret of Four Quarters’ success?
"To play all year and have success at different levels you need to be well organised. It’s important to have good people to support you: grooms, managers, horse buyers and a core of players you use all the time, both summer and winter."
-Will Four Quarters ever go for the Gold Cup for The British Open?
"For that money we can put two 15/18 teams on the field. Maybe in my last season. Just to say I’d done it."