A SPARKLING weekend of sport is set to entertain and delight when the Asahi British Beach Polo Championships come to Sandbanks for the sixth time.
While the summer might not be living up to expectations, organisers of the annual event hope it will be as glittering as ever, with two days of polo on July 12 and 13, combined with top flight beach volleyball at the Oakley International Beach Volleyball series between England and Scotland.
The event, which was launched with a reception at a Mayfair nightclub earlier this month, has become a favourite in the summer social calendar, attracting celebrities, sports fans and locals to the peninsula.
This year expect to see Nicola Roberts of Girls Aloud and actress Michelle Collins among the VIPs, alongside other stars. The championships will once again see England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales polo teams compete for the title, including some of Britain’s top players like Jamie Morrison and Jamie Le Hardy.
And Olympic veterans and Olympic hopefuls will be among the star turns during the volleyball matches, including former team GB partners Tom Lord and Robin Miedzybrodzki, who split shortly after London 2012 and will oppose each other for the first time, playing for England and Scotland respectively.
Jeff Brehaut, two time Olympic final referee and Beach Volleyball UK director said: “Expect fireworks from our beach volleyball stars of the future who have their sights firmly set on qualifying for Rio 2016.”
It’s sports car vs pony
In addition to the competitive action, there will be floodlit beach polo on the Friday night, the now familiar charity race between an Audi Q7 and a polo pony, raising money for nominated children’s charity Variety, and have-a-go polo and volleyball.
Also on the glamorous line up is a fashion show, shopping and fine dining experiences, and the renowned Sandbanks beach parties, with top DJs providing the soundtrack as guests party into the small hours.
Jack Kidd, who has played for England several times, said: “I have been lucky enough to play polo all round the work – Sandbanks is still one of my favourite weekends of the year.”