It has become one of the hottest tickets in Sydney during summer, now the iconic Water Polo by the Sea is going global.
The brain child of four time Australian Olympian Thomas Whalan, Water Polo Sea launched in 2012 and has been held at two popular Sydney location – Bondi Beach and Sydney Harbour.
Generating huge interest in the sport, Whalan is now taking the event global to the shores of the spectacularly colourful town of Portofino in Italy on Saturday 23 September 2017.
For Whalan, he always had the belief that the event would have international appeal and why he has been successful in attracting water polo all stars to compete each year.
“I always believed the event at Bondi Icebergs and Sydney Harbour would have global appeal and very much wanted to see the concept replicated globally to promote water polo.
“But didn’t imagine we’d have such a strong global following and demand to run our events across the world,” he said.
“Being an Olympian brings an element of credibility to the event and intention to truly promote this beautiful game. It has also allowed access to media and also the best athletes in the world, many of who I still call great friends from battling with or against them in the pool.”
The true connections and friendships across the sport have been apparent from day number one of the event. Three time Olympian Richie Campbell assisted in securing the location for the very first event, and WPBTS is now partnered by Delfina Sport, a company owned and run by fellow Australian water polo Olympian Tyler Martin.
For Rio Olympian Martin, his business too has been built on the back of his intimate knowledge of competing on the world stage.
“I am excited and privileged to once again be in partnership with Thomas and Water Polo the Sea as the event expands beyond Australia and in to Europe,” said Martin.
“Thomas has done an amazing job in raising the profile of the sport in Australia and the event has gone from strength to strength with every year, so we jumped at the opportunity to partner as it heads to Portofino.
“Europe is the global stronghold of water polo so we hope this can help put Delfina on the map in the Northern Hemisphere, as well as consolidate our reputation in our current markets,” he said.
This year’s expansion to Italy has likely come as no surprise to those who know Whalan, having lived and played water polo in Italy in his younger years, he has experience first hand the strong tradition and following of water polo.
It is also a symbolic part of the world for Martin, who played his first professional season in Camogli, which is a neighbouring town to Portofino.
“Former player and Global Event Manager Yarim Delpino was instrumental in making Portofino possible and with assistance also from former Italian captain and event sponsor Pro Recco president, Maurizo Felugo, and great support from the Italian federation (FIN), it really has been a large collaboration across the world to bring this together,” said Whalan.
The Italian crowds are undoubtedly excited to be hosting the event with people purchasing tickets from all over the country to experience the unique event.
The event has also secured television coverage in Italy through Telenord channel which will show the game nationally. The event will also be streamed live via Facebook and possibly YoutTube from 2:30pm (local Italian time).
The media in Italy has also embraced the event, with water polo fans guaranteed entertainment for the entirety of the event with the Italian Men’s team ‘Settebello’ taking on a team of water polo greats in a World All Stars team for the main event, and the women taking to the water prior to the men in a similar showcase of ‘Settebello’ vs an International Team from across the globe.
Watch this space for further progression of WPBTS, with interest sparking from other cities around the world, Whalan is hoping to announce some future event dates and locations soon.
Visit www.waterpolobythesea.com for full details of the event and ticket sales
For the exclusive Water Polo by the Sea merchandise – visit delfinasport.shop
Date: Saturday 23 September 2017
Time: 2:00 pm – 6:30 pm Central European Summer Time (Italy)
Location: Portofino, 16034 Portofino, Italy