The passing of Kuldip “Kolin” Dhillon has not gone unnoticed by the hundreds of young players who benefitted from his vision for the future of the game, most notably after he assumed his Chairmanship (OF SUPA??) and his leadership for the establishment of “The Way Forward Committee”. His enthusiasm for the game of polo, a sport he himself played and loved, formed the early foundations and led to the milestones which developed SUPA, from a loosely constructed “association” of selective schools and subsequently universities, into a growth oriented, incorporated limited company in the mid-1990’s. This newly invigorated SUPA later evolved into the present-day charity we know today. This directly influenced the participation of hundreds of schools and universities, several thousand alumni, as well as SAPA beneficiaries and present players, to participate fully in the sport. Many generations of players learned their love of the sport through SUPA and many whom continue play at polo clubs throughout the United Kingdom today.
His legacy, which notably includes efforts to internationalise participation, continues today. The earliest matches with Brazil and the USA in the 1990’s, spawned decades of visiting youth teams from, inter alia; New Zealand, West Indies, Eastern Europe, China, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Kenya, France, Nigeria, Pakistan, as well as frequent visits from India, who will again be guests this summer in 2023.
Whilst the achievement of the formative years of today’s SUPA rest with other willing and effective volunteers, surely none exerted more zeal, coupled with a unique, effective enthusiasm and charm, than Kolin.
On behalf of all past, present and future member players and former Committee members of SUPA, we wish to express our gratitude and condolences to his family for his singular and extraordinary talent.
Charles J.P. Betz
Honorary President, Schools and Universities Polo Association, Ltd