From rugby to AFL to NFL, sport brings us together

It’s one of the biggest sporting weekends of the year. I can’t wait to see the pick of the action first hand as England take on Australia in the Rugby World Cup. Who is going win? England of course!

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In 2011 I was in New Zealand, hoping for a final between England and the All Blacks. After we were knocked out, I cheered on Richie McCaw and co as they clinched the title. This time, I’m looking forward to heading to Twickenham with my family to see one of the great sporting rivalries reignited.

There is nothing quite like sport to bring people together. It’s part of the reason we love running our Virgin Active health clubs all around the world, and why we launched Virgin Sport this year. Virgin and sport have gone hand in hand ever since we launched Virgin Atlantic and sponsored our local football team, Crystal Palace, as they made it all the way to the FA Cup Final.

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Down Under, Virgin Australia are proud sponsors of the AFL, which I was fortunate enough to experience first-hand in Melbourne recently. I cheered on the Western Bulldogs as they narrowly lost out to the Adelaide Crows in an incredible elimination final. I’ve been told it was one of the best finals games of all time – it certainly felt like it, and the atmosphere at the MCG was magical. It’s the grand final this weekend – who will lift the trophy, Hawthorn Hawks or West Coast Eagles?

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Next up on our sporting calendar is the NFL International Series, with Virgin Atlantic bringing their Red Hot Reporter to Wembley as the New York Jets take on the Miami Dolphins on Sunday. Over in the States, Virgin America continue to proudly back their hometown heroes the San Francisco Giants.

I’ve always had a taste for trying out and watching different sports, whether it is my beloved kitesurfing, baseball with the Detroit Tigers (what do you think to my first pitch?), NFL with the New England Patriots, or even human 10-pin bowling – and basketball – with the Chicago Bulls. That’s not to mention tennis with the Necker Cup, running the Virgin Money London Marathon, cycling the Cape Argus Cycle Tour, balloon races, sailing adventures and the Virgin STRIVE Challenge.

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As we expand Virgin Active into even more new markets, and Virgin Sport begins to rollout our first mass participatory events, I want you to get out there and get involved too. On your marks…


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