Ever since Captain Sir Alexander Burnes handed in his dinner pail in 1841, the victim of a righteous and righteously furious Afghan mob, Britons of every stripe have viewed the vast mountain ranges of Central Asia and the people who live there with uncharacteristic humility and wary respect.
Perhaps the Shandur Polo Festival in north-western Pakistan is a symbol of why this might be. Perhaps the British have, over the past couple of centuries, come to recognise a faint and ill-defined kindred spirit. Perhaps both peoples secretly – even openly - revel in carefully controlled violence overlaid with a gossamer-thin veil of order and respectability. For at 3,700 metres above sea level (that’s 12,200 feet in old money), Shandur not only the highest polo tournament in the world, it’s also the most savage.
Though it’s hardly slip-off-your-heels-and-repair-the-divots-whilst-sipping-Champagne stuff, the polo shirt’s still the staple uniform for the players in this break-neck Chitrali event. As tough, as understated and as cool as the equestrians themselves, it’s as suited to a home-counties pub garden as to the so-called Roof of the World.
Available in a wide range of colours and three ready-washed finishes, all Oliver Brown polo shirts are made in England from wonderfully comfortable cotton, have three buttons at the neck, a soft colour and the classic ribbed cuffs to the short sleeves. Take your pick (and browse our incomparable Argentine polo belts) by searching ‘polo’ in our online shop.