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Travel companies scored for charity Reuben’s Retreat at the first-ever MSC Cup, held at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge stadium last week


E


ight travel companies batled it out – and raised £20,000 for charity – in the inaugural MSC Cup,


hosted by Chelsea FC at the club’s famous Stamford Bridge stadium in London. A team from MSC Cruises, one


of Chelsea’s sponsors, played against Atraction Tickets Direct, Cruise 118, Icelolly.com, Iglu.com, Te Travel Network Group, Tomas Cook and co-organisers Travel Weekly in the seven-a-side tournament. Players were welcomed in the


club’s press room and had a behind- the-scenes tour of the changing room, before making their way down the tunnel and onto the pitch. Two groups of four batled it out


to reach the quarter-finals, before the semis and final last Wednesday. In a nod to MSC Cruises’ Italian


heritage, Chelsea legend Gianfranco Zola, who scored 59 goals in 229 games, and former goalkeeper Carlo


14 30 MAY 2019


Cudicini, who played 141 times for the club, made guest appearances. Te two Italians took photos with


participants and coached the teams in the final, while Zola even found time for a game of keepie-uppie with Team Travel Weekly. MSC Cruises UK and Ireland


managing director Antonio Paradiso said: “It was an honour to host the first-ever MSC Cup in support of Reuben’s Retreat. Te travel industry is dynamic, fast-paced and growing at an impressive rate, but more importantly than that, our industry is one that cares, and the support for this event is testament to that. “I’d like to thank our partners


Chelsea FC for hosting us and of course Travel Weekly for geting behind this event. I’d also like to thank all of our UK agents and business partners for helping us to raise money for this amazing charity.” Stuart Parish, managing director of Travel Weekly Group, said: “Te


The MSC Cup was


an amazing experience and we’re so grateful to all who organised and took part in the day


MSC Cup was a great event to be involved with and a huge part of our goal to raise £50,000 for five charities during Travel Weekly’s 50th year. “All the teams played with passion


and it was a great experience to have played on the same pitch as the likes of Eden Hazard and N’Golo Kante. “Reuben’s Retreat is a wonderful


cause, which we are always really proud to support, and it has a special place in the hearts of the travel industry in the UK.” Te money raised at the MSC


Cup will be used to transform the ‘west wing’ in Reuben’s Retreat’s Derbyshire home. Phase 4, 5 & 6


renovations began in March to create physically therapeutic spaces for life- limited children and their siblings. Te funds raised from the Cup will help to create welcome, fun and engaging interiors throughout the hydrotherapy pool suite and multi- functional sensory, movie, play and chill zones. Founder Nicola Graham, who


met MSC Cruises’ Antonio Paradiso at a Tomas Cook Children’s Charity dinner last year, said: “Te travel industry is in the heart of our family and Reuben’s legacy, and without their support we wouldn’t be where we are today. Te MSC Cup was an amazing experience and we’re so grateful to all who organised and took part in the day. Helping families with uncertain futures to make magical memories is at the core of Reuben’s Retreat and nothing makes us happier than seeing the generous hearts that support us make memories as they help us on our journey.”


travelweekly.co.uk


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