prince harry nacho figueras veuve clicquot polo classic 2010 trophy black watch Ralph Lauren polo white cap

Prince Harry is a good sport, holding the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic trophy with opposing and winning team captain, Nacho Figueras. Photo: Dimitrios Kambouris, WireImage.com

Forget the World Cup -- the real competition to catch this weekend was the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic on New York's Governors Island, where Black Watch captain Nacho Figueras kicked Prince Harry's royal butt, beating his Black Rock team 6-5.

It's not hard to understand why A-list eyes from Mary J. Blige to Susan Sarandon were glued to 33-year-old Figueras during the match. Not only is he one of the most world-renowned polo players but he's also a world-famous model:

The Argentinean athlete is the face of Ralph Lauren's World of Polo fragrances and Black Label line.

Though he has been called the David Beckham of polo and the Brad Pitt of Argentina, Figueras, who has three children with photographer wife Delfina Blaquier, is a star in his own right.

In an exclusive interview with StyleList, he reveals the man behind the mallet.

StyleList: When did you start playing polo?
Nacho Figueras: I started playing when I was 9 years old in Argentina. In Argentina, it's not uncommon to play polo.



We've got lots of horses and polo fields. My father encouraged me to play. He wasn't a professional player himself but he played some polo and loved horses, so he got me started.

SL: Are there any particular songs you listen to before a match to get you psyched up?
NF: Most of the time, when I'm in the car going to the game, I listen to "Eye of the Tiger." I use that song quite a lot. It's like a power song that puts you in that mood, that whole "Rocky" thing. It gets you excited.

SL: How did you transition into modeling?
NF: I met [photographer ] Bruce Weber in the Hamptons more than 10 years ago, and he thought it would be good to have an Argentine polo player [do some modeling]. He mentioned it to Ralph [Lauren], and Ralph loved the idea. It was nothing really that I pursued. It was a relationship with Bruce and then an introduction to Ralph, and then it was Ralph's idea to get this going.

SL: Do you mind the comparisons to Brad Pitt and David Beckham?
NF: The truth is, I don't really think about it. What's important for me is to use that recognition or these things that are happening to me to promote polo. Polo, is ultimately, one of my missions in life.

Nacho figueras ralph lauren ad green polo shirt yellow stripe sitting saddle boots

Nacho Figueras "playing" polo for Ralph Lauren. Photo courtesy of Ralph Lauren

SL: Is modeling more challenging than playing polo?
NF: I don't really consider myself a model. I'm a professional polo player who represents a brand. Ralph Lauren is a lifestyle brand. I just live my life and, in the meantime, I represent Polo Ralph Lauren and the World of Polo fragrances.

[World of Polo fragrances] is exactly that concept: The Polo Black guy is suit-and-tie, in the city, going to the theater, a museum; the side of me that goes to the Hamptons and to the beach with the kids is the Polo Blue side; and the Polo Green is the man with the horses and the farm.

The World of Polo fragrances kind of represent the life I actually live, so it doesn't really require any extra effort. Polo Ralph Lauren and a polo player, the whole thing made a lot of sense. It works well together.

SL: Would you ever want to be involved in clothing design?
NF: I am very busy the way things are right now, so I don't have much time. That said, the name of my team is Black Watch, and I have a team with Ralph Lauren, which is Black Watch, and they design the shirts for my team and some other accents, like sweatshirts and hats.

The line is quite small now but the idea is to grow it. I help with the inspiration for it, although I'm not involved 100 percent with the design. But I help with the inspiration, the little details.

SL: What should polo spectators wear to a match?
NF: There's two sides to the [Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic] match. There's a VIP side, where summer suits are encouraged and ladies are encouraged to wear hats. That's more the VIP tent, which ultimately, the goal is to raise money for [American Friends of] Sentebale, Prince Harry's charity for orphan kids in Lesotho [Southern Africa].

But on the public side, which is free admission, it's whatever makes them comfortable. That's the thing with polo, there's not really an etiquette. It's a family event, a fun thing to do with your family, friends, kids, and your dogs. Just watch the game and have a good time. So whatever you feel comfortable with, it's fine. There are no rules to it at all.

SL: Besides the Ralph Lauren scents, what is your favorite smell?
NF: I love the smell of wet earth after it rains. Things like that remind me of growing up on the farm in Argentina. The smell of leather. My saddles and my boots -- things like that take me back in time to when I was a kid growing up, riding horses, and learning to play polo.

SL: What do you think looks sexy on a woman?
NF: I really believe style comes from the inside. I'll be biased, my wife is my wife and I love her. I think she has style, and I love everything she wears. But in the summer, summer dresses are nice.

SL: Since it's beach season, do you wear Speedos or trunks?
NF: I wear trunks. More like a surf look.

SL: Describe your personal style. What do you wear around the house?
NF: Around the house is one thing, you want to be comfortable. But I like to go to the elegant side. I love the '50s and '60s, when people used to dress up. So every time I have a chance to put on a suit, I try to. I like the elegant part of our society, and I think little by little we're losing that. It's great to dress up every once in a while, when it's appropriate.

SL: Anything you would never wear?
NF: I'm open. Of course, I wouldn't wear high heels!

Can't get enough of Nacho Figueras? Check out his official site and Twitter page.

In other stylish athlete news, check out soccer stud Cristiano Ronaldo's new Emporio Armani Underwear ads.