26 February 2103
Former internationals Peter Nicol MBE and Tim Garner will contest 7 Squash Matches in 7 Days on 7 Continents in a bid to help raise the profile of Squash’s campaign to join the programme of the 2020 Olympic Games.
The Xodus 7 Continent Challenge, inspired by legendary British explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes’ Land Rover 7x7x7 (ie. seven marathons in seven days on seven continents), was conceived by Garner.
The Xodus 7 Continent Challenge will see the English pair travel more than 40,000 miles and spend over 70 hours on planes over the course of a week that will be a test of endurance both mentally and physically.
Crossing squash rackets in each of the destinations the matches will be the focal point of squash activity on each continent at that time.
“I wanted to come up with something that would highlight the fantastic bid that Squash is putting together to join the Olympic Programme in 2020 and got thinking about the 7 Marathons Challenge and how that could be adopted,” said Garner.
“This will not only hopefully do that, but will also demonstrate the global universality of the sport.
“It is fantastic to have someone with the profile of Peter Nicol to share it with,” added the 42-year-old former world No26. “Hopefully we will start and finish as friends – though I have the feeling we both intend winning!”
As well as profiling the Olympic Bid, the Xodus 7 Continent Challenge will be raising monies for two squash causes: The first is to support Squash’s inclusion in the LV= SOS Kit Aid Scheme, and the second Natasha’s Steps, a trust set up help young squash player Natasha Drake who is recovering from an idiopathic bleed on her brain.
Xodus 7 Continent Challenge schedule:
|Day 1:||13th April – Falkland Islands||‘Antarctica’|
|Day 2:||14th April – Santiago, Chile||South America|
|Day 3:||16th April* – Sydney, Australia||Australia|
|Day 4:||17th April – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia||Asia|
|Day 5:||18th April – Cairo, Egypt||Africa|
|Day 6:||19th April – London, UK||Europe|
|Day 7:||20th April – New York||North America|
(*lose a day due to international date line)
Nicol, the former world champion and world number one, said: “When Tim approached me about the idea I had no hesitation – well, maybe a little – in saying yes! Through the course of this bid process, Squash has been demonstrating all of its strengths and why it will be a great addition to the Olympic Programme and the more people that hear about it the better.”
Xodus Chief Operating Officer Stephen Swindell added: “As we continue to grow Xodus globally, it made perfect sense to back the 7 Continent Challenge – given that it covers all the corners of the world!
“We are passionate about sport and squash in particular, as it is accessible to all ages, abilities and in all the countries we operate in. Squash has many of the attributes that we look for in the business environment, so are delighted to be able to help with the Olympic Bid process in this way.”
Official website: www.7ContinentChallenge.com