Sir Matthew Pinsent, Christine Ohuruogu MBE, Mark Hunter MBE, Heather Stanning MBE and Leon Taylor joined 450 guests for SportsAid's Sports Night in London on November 6 where more than £100,000 was raised to help young sports people across the UK.
The sports-themed fancy dress dinner, which was sponsored by Strutt & Parker, included a range of sporting challenges expertly assisted by triathlete Anthony Haynes, hockey player Rhys Smith, netball player Alana John and eight other current recipients of SportsAid Awards. During one of these challenges Sir Matthew Pinsent temporarily came out of retirement (see photo) to row against 17-year-old Arthur Doyle from London and one of the guests to add an extra £1,000 to the record-breaking total.
Arthur Doyle said afterwards, “I thoroughly enjoyed the evening. It was great to meet the guests and to talk with them about rowing and how SportsAid had benefited my development as a rower.”
Sir Matthew Pinsent tweeted, "Great to be @TeamSportsAid dinner. Fancy dress (sport) being taken very seriously - lots of money raised too."
During dinner, world champion shotgun shooter Amber Hill and wheelchair racer Sheikh Sheikh joined host Mark Pougatch on stage to speak about the support they have had from the charity. Later, joint-host Mark Durden-Smith helped to auction off more than £35,000 worth of lots.
Top bidders left with some fantastic prizes including a chance to ride with the British Olympic bobsleigh team in France, a diving lesson with Olympic silver medallist Leon Taylor and a training session with former Olympic and current world champion 400m runner Christine Ohuruogu.
SportsAid would like to thank all the guests and particularly the Sports Night committee members for making the event such a success for the charity.