Sibbett Gregory Sponsor Charity 34-hour Rugby World Record Attempt
A local touch rugby team is aiming to break the Guinness world record for the longest continuous game of beach touch rugby.
The 22 players – six per side plus five substitutes – will begin their epic rugby record attempt on the sand in Poole, Dorset at 8am on Friday 20th May and hope to still be on their feet playing come 6pm on Saturday 21st.
‘The Sandbaggers’ – a social team set up in 2008 by a group of GPs, anaesthetists and surgeons – are raising money for two Motor Neurone Disease (MND) charities in support of their teammate Andrew Vaughton, a local doctor and father-of-three, who was diagnosed with the devastating and incurable disease last year.
MND is a terminal, rapidly progressing disease that affects the brain and spinal cord. It can leave people locked in a failing body unable to move, talk and eventually breathe. It kills six people every day in the UK, a third within 12 months of diagnosis and more than half within two years. It currently has no cure.
“Motor Neurone Disease turned my whole world – and that of my family – upside down,” said the 44-year-old who will be playing in the record attempt.
“The Sandbaggers gave me a space to feel normal, helped me navigate through some very dark times and finally find my old self again.
“I will never forget the support and love from the group during those early days from diagnosis. With the support of everyone we have looked at ways of raising awareness and much needed money to support research and care around MND. This is why we came up with the idea of the world record attempt.”
The record currently stands at 33 hrs and 33 minutes and is held by Hoylake Rugby Club.
Sibbett Gregory have provided a charitable donation and financial support to assist the running of the event, whilst Sibbett Gregory’s Head of Agency, Alastair Knott is also part of the Sandbaggers team and will be playing throughout the planned 34 hrs. Other staff members have also volunteered to help throughout the two days and night.
The Sandbaggers have so far raised more than £35,000 for The Motor Neurone Disease Association and My Name’5 Doddie Foundation – nearly seven times their original fundraising target. Various local companies have also made additional corporate donations to the charities in support of the event.
Alastair Knott said: “It’s fantastic that Sibbett Gregory have enthusiastically supported this event which will raise much needed funds for two very worthy charities”.
“The players have been training hard and we’re looking forward to running out on the sand in support of our good friend Andy. There are strict rules about what we can and can’t do during the record attempt. We’ll be playing through the night and when we’re not on the pitch we will grabbing some sleep on the sand or trying to refuel and avoid cramping up or getting injured.”
Donations can be made at: https://www.justgiving.com/team/SandbaggersRFC
- The Motor Neurone Disease Foundation
The MND Association focuses on improving access to care, research and campaigning for those people living with or affected by MND in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Visit www.mndassociation.org
- My Name’5 Doddie Foundation
Former Scotland and British Lions star Doddie Weir is suffering from Motor Neuron Disease. The My Name’5 Doddie Foundation has two aims: firstly, to raise funds for research into the causes of MND and investigate potential cures, and, secondly, to make grants to sufferers of MND and enable them to live as fulfilled a life as possible. For more info go to www.myname5doddie.co.uk