16 Dec. 2006: The Argentine National Pato Championship Match at historic Campo de Pato, located in Buenos Aires, Argentina's capital. Las Heras (in pink shirts) defeat rival El Siasgo for the title, 20-12. SUMMARY: The national pastime of Argentina is pato (“duck”), an equestrian sport combing polo and basketball. Games in the 1700s involved using a live duck inside a basket instead of a ball. Today, riders attempt to throw the modern pato - a soccer ball with six leather handles - into one of two baskets at either end of a large field, similar to basketball. The pato must be gathered off the ground and thrown using only the rider's right hand. Opponents will try to pry away the ball with their left hand. Despite being the country's national pastime, the number of pato players is dwindling. Those who carry on the tradition form a tight-knit community.