20th Anniversary Of The RPA

Sporting Wine Club is a strong supporter of sporting charities and was proud to be supplying Sumaridge Wine for the 20th Anniversary of the RPA awards evening on May 9th. Even more so when they were honouring Ed Jackson and Doddie Weir as they deal with their own life challenges, having given so much on the field of rugby.

It was a wonderful and emotional evening at Battersea Evolution surrounded by sporting stars. Sumaridge White and Red Blend was universally enjoyed and featured prominently alongside the English Red Rose.

As you can see, the great Schalk Brits were in attendance on the Coutts table, who sponsored the evening – although only taking sips given the big Premiership Semi Final approaching.

Meantime, we placed a win your Weight in Sumaridge Wine, a tasting evening and a visit to Schalk Burgers wine estate into the auction. They generated thousands of pounds for this amazing charity which is committed to the physical and mental health of rugby players, and leads the way in Europe.

In support of RPA, any purchase of two cases or more of our rugby wines in the next fortnight will generate a £25 payment to the Restart Charity.


Chris and Simon

England’s Finishers Prove A Point

Many a team came to Bath’s Recreation Ground in the champion years of the 80’s and left shaking their heads at a scoreline they felt was grossly unfair. Opposition front rows or line outs often claimed moral victories despite conceding 30 points or more. We just smiled and knew the real difference. Brutal speed based training orchestrated by ex SAS Olympic Pentathlete Tom Hudson was designed to give us critical finishing power and skills when everyone was tired in the last 20 minutes.

Sound familiar? England has altered its training pattern to have that last 20 minute intensity and Danny Care in particular took the art of making an impact from the bench to a different level last weekend to achieve what seemed a crazy scoreline only 15 minutes earlier. Care must think the game rather easy having scored or created three tries in 8 minutes! No wonder Jones calls his bench the ‘Finishers’, it is the strongest in world rugby and that includes the All Blacks.

More than one senior rugby figure has suggested to me that substitutions should be injury not tactical based, which would reduce onfield collisions between fresh impact players and their tiring opposition. Whether supported by statistics or not, this has logic and I support also the reduction of interminable replacements at the end of games which is so disruptive. It will not get Eddie’s support however. His focus on the last 20 minutes and who should be on the field could win the World Cup.

People are queuing up to highlight weaknesses in the All Blacks as they come to the end of a very long season and just squeezed past Scotland. I prefer to pay credit to a nation which is riding on the crest of a wave. Top 5 in the world, real pace and ingenuity in the backs, and unforeseen depth in a forward pack riddled with injuries. They would also have been motivated by the inspirational sight of their afflicted hero, Doddie Weir, who presented the match ball. The world of rugby is rallying round efforts to raise awareness of Motor Neurone disease from which this great man suffers, and that battle will continue.

With a weekend to go before the Autumn Internationals come to a close there is no doubt in my mind that a top 4 has emerged in the world order – New Zealand, England, Australia and Ireland. However, I am already looking forward to the Calcutta Cup 2018 – I played against Scotland 7 times and every one was fiercely fought with no quarter asked or given. The 2018 vintage could be right up there and, even with the Aussies in town and possibly there for the taking, the Auld Enemy is on the horizon and the glens are stirring impatiently to fashion an appropriate welcome.


SWC’s Charity Target For Doddie Weir – Amazing Wine Offer!

SWC had the huge privilege to supply the wines to the Doddie Weir Testimonial last Monday at Battersea Evolution in London.

I played against Doddie in the early 90’s and over the years we have had a lot of laughs. He is a legend of the game.  For him to be suffering from Motor Neurone Disease is a total tragedy, and for which there is no known cure.  We and everyone else will do everything we can to help Doddie and assist in researching the causes of MND.  I am sure we all remember the sad passing of legendary Springbok Joost Van der Westhuizen last year from the same illness. It is vital that a cure is found.

Together with the help of European Rugby, our table in the corner contributed £25k, which made us incredibly proud.  Schalk Burger also donated a visit to his wine farm for free which was sold for £5k.  Fittingly we started the evening with the superb Mon Rene, Schalk’s Sparkling wine, champagne in all but name, and his very excellent Meerkat wines, the Pinotage and the Sauvignon Blanc, were much enjoyed and were drunk throughout the evening.

To continue to support Doddie, we wish to offer you the opportunity to buy all three wines with a donation to his foundation of £5 per case for the Meerkats and £10 per case for the Mon René, full details are below.  We have a target in our minds to raise another £2,500 through these sales and also to raise awareness of MND among the many hundreds of people to whom we will send this.

To find out more about Doddie’s amazing Trust and their events raising awareness of, and supporting people with, MND please click here.

Thanks for your support.

Simon Halliday & Chris Mariner
Founders, Sporting Wine Club


Mon René

Mon Rene

A refined Cap Classique sparkler with crisp citrus and pineapple notes. It has a persistent mousse with a creamy and richly textured finish. It is fresh and elegant, perfect for a celebration or as an aperitif.  Please click here to view the wine.


£83.94 per case with £10 per case donation to Doddie’s Trust.  Please contact either michelle@sportingwineclub.com or alex@sportingwineclub.com to place an order.


Meerkat Pinotage

Meerkat Pinotage

A rich, unctuous Pinotage brimming with sweet plum and black cherry characteristics, supported by sensuous mocha chocolate and soft vanilla.  Please click here to view the wine.


£59.94 per case with £5 per case donation to Doddie’s Trust.  Please contact either michelle@sportingwineclub.com or alex@sportingwineclub.com to place an order.




Meerkat Sauvignon Blanc

Meerkat Sauvignon Blanc

This crisp and lively Sauvignon Blanc is a perfect marriage of beautiful aromas and flavours: green melon, lemongrass, passion fruit and crisp, green apples. It is the ultimate quaffer for the SB lover.  Please click here to view the wine.


£53.94 per case with £5 per case donation to Doddie’s Trust  Please contact either michelle@sportingwineclub.com or alex@sportingwineclub.com to place an order.