The International Canoe Federation and Chinese sport manufacturer, Yupin Sports, have announced an exciting 10-year partnership that will form the foundation for the continued growth of canoe polo worldwide.

Under the agreement, Yupin Sports will provide valuable equipment for canoe polo for the next decade, starting with the 2018 ICF Canoe Polo World Championships in Canada.

The arrangement will help the development of canoe polo in new countries, along with already established areas of the sport.

“Our agreement is a milestone for both Yupin Sports and the ICF,” Yupin Sport CEO, Mr HaiHong Wang, said.

“By working together, we believe we can do more for the sport. It’s our honour to partner with the ICF to develop Canoe Polo.”

Yupin Sports will donate and loan goals, shot-clocks and scoreboards for this year’s World Championships in Welland, Canada, along with eight competition-specific sets of equipment supplied for development at future world championships.

In the longer term, Yupin Sports has generously agreed to donate 20 complete sets of kayaks, paddles and associate equipment every year to new Federations, with the Philippines being the first beneficiary.

It will also provide clothing and headsets for world championship referees for the next ten years.

Under the agreement, the ICF will use the Wisely ball at all world and continental championships between 2018 and 2022.

“Canoe polo is a fast-growing sport, and this partnership with Yupin Sports will provide a significant boost for the continued growth of the discipline,” Greg Smale, Chair of the ICF’s canoe polo committee and ICF board member, said.

“At the 2017 Asian Canoe Polo Championships in Malaysia I met with Mr Wang and Yupin Sports. His enthusiasm to launch this sport to another level is shared by myself.

“We agreed to explore ways to work together in this respect. The variety of agreements between the ICF and Yupin Sports demonstrates our extensive discussions.”

Mr Smale said the benefits of the partnership between the ICF and Yupin Sports will be seen almost immediately.

“The benefit to the 2018 ICF Canoe Polo Championships in Welland, Canada, is of significant help to the organisers,” he said.

“The use of headsets by world championship referees will assist in continued professionalisation of the sport.

“For canoe polo to move forward and become a truly global sport, we both agree the donation of equipment and subsequent follow up support to new countries is necessary. While canoe polo has developed steadily over the years it is agreed that significant external and long-term support is necessary to promote the development of this discipline.

“Yupin Sports has the capacity and wishes to assist in the global development of the discipline.”

Mr Smale extended his personal thanks to Mr Song Peng from Malaysia, who assisted greatly in negotiations between himself and Mr Wang.

Photo courtesy of Malaysia Canoe Polo

Canoe Polo