Aqua rugby will launch in Manly in March

WORLD-FIRST: Rugby greats Sharni Williams and Wendell Sailor help launch Aqua Rugby in Manly.

WORLD-FIRST: Rugby greats Sharni Williams and Wendell Sailor help launch Aqua Rugby in Manly.

A NEW sporting event is coming to Manly Cove in March - but safe to say it's not like any regular sport you've ever seen.

It's a floating rugby festival, with "aqua rugby" played on a 30x30 metre pontoon pitch, by former and current rugby greats, representatives from local clubs (including the Manly Marlins and Warringah Rats) and other random guests - think Manly vs Bondi lifeguards as well as the army and navy.

Superyachts will ferry punters from all over Sydney, there'll be live music, food trucks and a big screen on the promenade, as well as a ticketed event at the Manly Pavilion (the by then refurbished restaurant's first event) and other functions.

Sports administrator Jimmy Galvin, 31, has been planning the world-first event - with former Wallaby Bernard Foley - for five years. "It's six-a-side fast, paced rugby union where players have to dive into the water and can get tackled off the side," he said.

AQUA RUGBY: Wendell Sailor and Sharni Williams are throwing their support behind the festival - as is four Pines.

AQUA RUGBY: Wendell Sailor and Sharni Williams are throwing their support behind the festival - as is four Pines.

"It's pure entertainment with speed and energy and big splashes. Expect the glitz and glamour of the Monaco Grand Prix but in Manly and with rugby!"

Names already secured for the various men's and women's competitions include Wendell Sailor (for the national indigenous aqua rugby side), Sharni Williams (coaching for the aqua Warringah rats), former Wallabies Phil Waugh and Drew Mitchell and New Zealand great Andrew Mehrtens. There will also be a children's rugby activation with inflatable activities and rugby drills.

"Basically, it's about giving back to rugby, and showcasing everything that is beautiful about Manly at the same time," Mr Galvin said, adding that they have secured a broadcasting deal with Channel 9.

  • Aqua Rugby will be held at Manly Cove from March 4-5 next year. See aquarugby.com for tickets and other information.

Have something to say? Send a letter to the editor at: editor@northernbeachesreview.com.au

Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content: