2016 has proved to be a vintage year for British sports fans. Stellar performances so far include: England Rugby sealing a 6 Nations Grand Slam in Paris; Danny Willett following their lead with a Masters golf victory in April; Saracens winning their first European Cup in May; England’s rugby boys continuing their roll during an unbeaten tour of Australia in June; Wales making the Euro semi-finals, Andy Murray claiming his second Wimbledon tennis crown and Chris Froome take his third Tour de France title, all in July; England’s limited-overs cricket team’s summer-long dominance; and a cast of thousands, seemingly, coming home from Brazil in August clutching Olympic medals.
For those of you whose pulses have only just returned to normal, we’re glad to report that the fun is far from over. The remaining months of the year promise several huge events, many of which you could enjoy with an Engage hospitality package.
So, to help whet your appetite, he’s our guide to the top five sports hospitality events between now and the New Year.
Rugby Union: England Autumn Internationals
Twickenham will host England’s Old Mutual Wealth Series on four consecutive Saturdays from 12th November to 3rd December. South Africa, Fiji, Argentina and Australia will be taking turns to have a crack at the host nation, who will field a confident squad bolstered by some exciting new talent.
It’s a great time to be an England Rugby supporter and, with the team being unbeaten so far this year, they will be favourites to win all four games. Don’t miss out on seeing some of the world’s greatest players do battle in front of 83,000 passionate fans.
American Football: The NFL’s London Fixtures
The NFL has visited Wembley every year since 2007, with a total of 14 games having been played to crowds averaging over 82,000 per match. 2016 will be the third consecutive year that London has staged three NFL games and, for the first time, Twickenham will host one of the matches.
You don’t need to be an expert to enjoy the spectacle of American Football, where 25 stone monsters clash at the line of scrimmage whilst world-class sprinting talents patrol the wider spaces.
During the approximately 3hr match duration, the USA’s supreme athletes go head-to-head in a series of short, explosive passages of play, meaning it’s ideally suited to providing a comprehensive and novel corporate hospitality experience.
Golf: The British Masters
One of Europe’s most prestigious tournaments will this year take place on one of the UK’s most beautiful courses, The Grove in rural Hertfordshire. Former World No 1 Luke Donald will be playing host this year, with Olympic Champion Justin Rose and Lee Westward joining him in a very strong field.
Sky Sports will add kudos to proceedings with live coverage and the course’s five-star hotel will provide the final touches to the ultimate luxury sports event experience.
Tennis: The ATP World Tour Finals
For those of you unfamiliar with the event, the ATP World Tour Finals sees the top eight male singles players and doubles teams of the ATP Rankings face off in two round-robin tournaments that each culminate in final matches.
First played in 1970, the event boasts the most illustrious list of champions imaginable, with Borg, McEnroe, Becker, Agassi, Sampras and Federer all having lifted the trophy. Traditionally a nomadic event, the ATP Finals have now been played at London’s 17,500-seater O2 Arena every year since 2009. As well as providing a sensational setting, the O2 also ensures there’s one world-class British tennis tournament the weather can’t ruin.
Novak Djokovic has won the past four titles, but Andy Murray is tipped to push him all the way this year, doubtless roared on by a partisan home crowd. This, however, assumes they both overcome the not inconsiderable challenges posed by, amongst others, living legends Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
Football: The Premier League
Perhaps requiring less by way of introduction, familiarity must not breed complacency when it comes to experiencing live Premier League games.
As the most watched league in the world, it generates endless drama and provides week upon week of sold-out games, vital clashes and compelling derbies at a host of state-of-the-art stadia.
Who wouldn’t be enthralled by a competition that sees world-class managers such as Antonio Conte, Pep Guardiola, Jose Mourinho and Arsène Wenger pitting players of the calibre of Eden Hazard, Sergio Agüero, Paul Pogba, and Alexis Sánchez against each other? The big names are already rising to the top this season, so now is a great time to treat your clients or staff to a day the will never forget.