Tuesday 18 August 2015

Captain Jamie Nussbaumer and team mates Tim Ravenscroft and David Hooper will spend six days next month climbing Grand Paradiso, which stands at 4,061m, before heading to the 4,807m high peak of Mont Blanc, which is the highest mountain in Western Europe.

The challenge is the first in a series of annual events that the island team will take on to raise money for three beneficiaries. Half of the money raised will go to the GCB Players Development Programme Fund, which provides financial support to young cricketers, with the remainder being split equally between Male Uprising Guernsey and Only Fools and Donkeys.

'The national squad is fortunate to have played cricket in Malaysia, Singapore and across Europe and this initiative allows them to give something back to those embarking on their own cricket journey as well as raising money for two fantastic charities,' said GCB chief executive Mark Latter.

'When we first had the idea of an annual fundraiser, we thought it would start in a small way such as a car wash but the players have been really enthusiastic and keen to take on challenges that require dedication and determination. Jamie, Tim and David will be setting the bar high for their team mates and hopefully that means we can raise even more money.'

Only Fools and Donkeys plans to use the money raised to buy sports and activity equipment as requested by Le Murier School which it has supported for four years. The charity was chosen as a beneficiary by GCB cricket partner Ravenscroft.

'Ravenscroft has been a long-standing supporter of GCB as we recognise the enormous benefits it brings to so many players. This is a brilliant idea and it's testament to the attitude of the players that they don't take their position in the island team for granted and want to ensure others have the same opportunity,' said Charlie Roger, chief executive officer, Channel Islands for Ravenscroft.

'Having Only Fools and Donkeys, which has already raised so much through sporting challenges, as a beneficiary is a natural fit and we know that the new equipment will enable children at Le Murier to take on their own sporting challenges.'

MUG chairman Trevor Kelham said the money raised would be used towards the cost of a specialist cancer nurse which the charity is funding.

'MUG's three year commitment to financially support Guernsey's first male cancer specialist nurse means that every penny counts and we are so pleased to be chosen by Guernsey Cricket Board to benefit from this extraordinary challenge,' he said.

'This specialist nurse helps male urological patients who are undergoing treatment for bladder, prostate and kidney cancers and provides support through the diagnosis, treatment and recovery stages of their cancer care and so it's a service which is making a big difference to patients locally.'

Before the trio head to France to begin their challenge, they, and the rest of the Guernsey side will undertake a step challenge on Saturday 29th August from 9.00am to noon in Town to start the fundraising efforts and raise the profile of the initiative. On treadmills donated by My Fitness where Mr Ravenscroft works, the team will walk the equivalent number of steps needed to reach the top of Mont Blanc.

Mr Nussbaumer said it was important to give something back.

'I have been fortunate enough to make some great friends and have some once in a lifetime experiences through playing cricket. I feel that it is our duty as current island cricketers to ensure that future generations are able to benefit in the same way that I have. Unfortunately, not all are as fortunate as ourselves, and that is why we will be working especially hard to raise funds for MUG and Only Fools and Donkeys so others can also prosper.' he said.

The national squad will wear specially designed Mont Blanc Challenge t-shirts at the inter-insular at Port Soif on 22nd August and will travel in them to Essex for ICC World Cricket League 6 in September. The t-shirts will also be available to buy at KGV and Fletcher Sports.

Donations can be made online at  which will feature the latest news on the challenge and a live blog. Donations can also be sent to GCB Office, KGV Playing Fields, Rue Cohu, Castel, GY5 7SZ.