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Lawrence Dallaglio becomes an Emirates Sports Ambassador

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Emirates Airline has appointed rugby legend and former England captain, Lawrence Dallaglio OBE, as a Sports Ambassador.

Maurice Flanagan, Executive Vice Chairman, Emirates Airline & Group, said: “Emirates is excited to announce one of the greatest names in world rugby as an Emirates Sports Ambassador. We are pleased to see Lawrence lending his support to the Rugby Sevens World Cup tournament that won him his first international rugby medal, and trust he will be impressed with our new sporting venue, ‘The Sevens’. Record breaking crowds of 50,000 fans who attended each day of the Dubai Sevens last year, showed the world that The Sevens can establish itself as a sports arena for the international stage.

“It is our aim that The Sevens will encourage greater participation in rugby and all other sports by Arab nationals, and that the venue will help foster the development of teams, both here in the UAE and further afield.”

Dallaglio kick started his England career playing in the first ever Rugby World Cup Sevens at Murrayfield in 1993, beating Australia in the final – a victory he was destined to repeat when beating them again at 15-a-side when they won the coveted Webb Ellis Trophy ten years later, in 2003.

Dallaglio said, “Something drew me so strongly to this game, and even more so when it came to playing for my country. The physical and mental strength it takes to compete at such a high level became an incredible challenge and I loved every minute of it. When the call-up came to step-up from international 7s to the senior 15s side, it was one of the proudest moments of my life.”

The retired 36-year-old notched up a staggering 18 seasons with the London Wasps, three British & Irish Lions’ Tours and a 15 year career with the senior England team, which included being the only player to play every minute of England's 2003 Rugby World Cup winning campaign.

The Sports Ambassador role, demonstrates Emirates’ international support for both the 7 and 15-a-side game in rugby union. The airline has a long-standing history of supporting rugby – as well as being the Principal Partner of the upcoming Rugby World Cup Sevens in Dubai this week, the airline sponsors several legs of the IRB World Sevens Series (Dubai, South Africa, London and Edinburgh), the England and Samoa sevens squads, the IRB Referees and Worldwide Partner of Rugby World Cup 2011.

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