Kihikihi Polo Club are extremely proud of the high standard they voluntarily manage their prestigious grounds.
The Kihikihi Domain has been the club’s “home” ground since 1946. (Prior to this they played at various venues in the district including Te Awamutu race course. See History page for details)
The Kay family played a leading role in raising the funds to hire a contractor to level the domain area good enough to play polo and achieve the required 300 x 200 yard area for a polo ground. A lease was drawn up for the club which also agreed to maintain the grounds. The lease was from 1st December to 31st March and is still in place today with Kihikihi club members still being the primary entity maintaining the ground. The grandstand was moved from its original home at the currently situated Kihikihi tennis courts and placed on the half way line of the polo ground. It was recorded as being the first club in the Auckland province to have a halfway grandstand providing fantastic viewing and is still enjoyed by spectators of the game today.
The ground is now also enjoyed by many sporting codes and a very popular destination for the general public.
The club have also utilised “flat” paddocks out at Korakonui as practise (chukka) grounds since the 1960’s, firstly at Brian Kay’s farm and then more permanently at Tony Kay‘s, once Stephen leveled and paddock to the rough size of a polo ground in the early 1990’s.
The club stepped up a notch when Paul Kay purchased the property on Arapuni Road and decided to develop his own private ground. This was to be a labour of love and he created the first couch grass polo ground in New Zealand back in 1993. This has been re-turfed, re-sown and continues to demand strategic measures to maintain the level of high performance it currently upholds . Other clubs have followed in Paul’s footsteps, whitnessing the achievements from this ground. The surface allows both player and horse to showcase top polo skills. It’s “springy” nature is very kind on the ponies legs and provides a polished surface for the ball to run smoothly, speeding the game up considerably. So popular was this turf that Kihikihi club have now resown all their grounds using this couch grass. The last one being their “Chukka” ground at Stephen Kay’s farm in 2003, which, in itself, would compete with any other polo ground worldwide. No longer then used just for practises !
The Nicholson Glen Ground, located at the Kihikihi Domain, currently home to the Waipa Equestrian Group, can also double up as a fourth ground if need be for bigger tournaments, although is slightly smaller than the standard polo ground measurements.