The inaugural Costa Smeralda Invitational has raised more than €135,000 for children’s charities Autism Rocks and UNICEF Road to Awareness.
The money raised capped a hugely successful first staging of European Golf’s newest celebrity event hosted at the spectacular Pevero Golf Club in the chic corner of northern Sardinia this weekend.
Indian cricket legend Kapil Dev was awarded the champion’s Zegna Blue Jacket by tournament host and Hublot ambassador Justin Rose at the event’s glitzy Gala Dinner at Hotel Cala di Volpe. Dev, a two-handicapper, scored 37 stableford points to top the individual celebrity leaderboard by three from football superstar Gianfranco Zola. Sky News sports presenter Sarah-Jane Mee won the ladies title with 23 points.
The tournament kicked off with a guest appearance from FC Barcelona superstar Andres Iniesta who received his first golf lesson from world No.4 Rose. Iniesta took tips from Rose on the range at the Robert Trent Jones Snr-designed course before the sporting heavyweights engaged in putting and football juggling competitions.
Bobsleigh legend Alexander Zubkov, Russia’s flag bearer and the winner of two gold medals at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, also enjoyed his very first golf experience and his one-on-one time with Rose clearly worked despite the language barrier; Zubkov’s third shot landed close to the pin on Pevero GC’s stunning 164-metre par 3 10th hole.
Rose remained on the Autism Rocks “Beat the Pro” par 3 for the remainder of the day to play the hole with each of the glittering cast of stars from the world of sports and entertainment who captained teams of VIP guests and business leaders.
Along with European Solheim Cup captain Carin Koch who hosted the UNICEF Road to Awareness 7th hole, Rose took on football superstars Gianfranco Zola, Roberto Di Matteo, Ronald de Boer, Dwight Yorke and Les Ferdinand, cricket gods Dev and Brian Lara as well as double Olympic Games gold medalist Edwin Moses. Scottish actor Dougray Scott, of Mission Impossible II and Taken 3 frame, and television stars Denise van Outen (England), Rannvijay Singh (India) and Federica Fontana (Italy) also enjoyed the spectacular setting and course.
Tournament Director Jamie Cunningham, the CEO of Professional Sports Group, was pleased with the first tournament.
“We’re delighted to have raised over 135,000 euros at the first event. With such a spectacular setting here in Sardinia and given the feedback of both the VIPS and celebrities, we’re very confident that The Costa Smeralda Invitational can become one of the leading charity golf tournaments in the world – and a must-play for stars from entertainment and sport every June.”
Mr. Cunnningham also expressed his gratitude to the tournament’s supporters including presenting partners American Express Global Business Travel and Costa Smeralda Holdings as well as Hublot and Starwood alongside Davidoff Cigars, deGrisogono, Ethimo Outdoor Furniture, H&D Rare and Unique, Vigne Surrau and Zegna.