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Last Updated: Monday, 6 December, 2004, 18:14 GMT
Elephant polo stars just champion
Scotland's elephant polo team
Scotland's elephant polo team trampled the opposition
Scotland are celebrating sporting glory after being crowned world champions of elephant polo.

The Duke of Argyll captained the Chivas team to victory in the Elephant Polo World Championships in Nepal.

They beat National Parks of Nepal 12-6 to regain the world title they last won in 2001.

Arriving back in the UK, the jubilant Duke said: "No one can deny Scotland are one of the world's sporting heavyweights."

The final witnessed a glut of goals from Scotland's striker, David Bernal, and a Geoffrey Dobbs strike sealed victory.

We're ecstatic at bringing the World Cup back to Scotland
Duke of Argyll
During games, the players fight for the ball on elephants controlled by mahouts, or drivers.

No elephant may lie down in front of the goal mouth, as to do so constitutes a foul.

If a player falls off an elephant, play is stopped while the player remounts.

The game consists of two 10-minute chukkas of playing time, with a 15-minute interval.

The Inveraray-based Duke of Argyll said: "We're ecstatic at bringing the World Cup back to Scotland.

"With this victory, no one can deny Scotland are one of the world's sporting heavyweights.

"To travel to Tiger Tops, which is situated in the Chitwan National Park, and come away a world champion was an experience of a lifetime."

Trunk on success

Eight teams from Hong Kong, Thailand, India, the UK and a ladies' international squad, competed in the week-long tournament.

The Duke of Argyll said national pride played a part in Scotland's success.

"We'd heard news from home that there was a call to make St Andrew's Day a national holiday and day of national celebration," he said.

"This inspired us to pull out all the stops and it worked. After all, elephant polo was co-founded by a Scotsman."

Registered as an Olympic sport with the Nepal Olympic Committee, elephant polo was invented by Scotsman James Manclark in 1983.

Speedy elephants

The World Championships have been staged every year since against the backdrop of the Royal Chitwan National Park in Nepal, famous for its population of Royal Bengal tigers and other wildlife.

Scotland manager Jim Long said talented elephants were vital to a team's chances of success.

"You have someone to drive your elephant, so you can concentrate on trying to get contact with the ball," he said.

"Each team of elephants has a range of speeds, with each having a small elephant which can move quite fast - you tend to put your best player on that one.

"It is slower than horse polo, but faster than you might think."

Scots lose elephant polo final
21 Sep 03 |  Scotland

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