Santiago to Sydney – Xodus 7 Continent Challenge enters toughest stage
The Xodus 7 Continent Challenge enters its most gruelling stretch today as squash players Peter Nicol MBE and Tim Garner begin an 19-hour trip from Santiago, Chile to Sydney, Australia as part of their quest to complete seven matches in seven days on seven continents.
The Challenge is a show of support for squash’s bid to be included in the 2020 Olympic Games and began with the first match in the Falkland Islands on Saturday before the pair continued onto Santiago. Garner levelled the seven-match series 1-1 with a 3-2 (12/10 6/11 11/9 8/11 12/10) victory in 60 Minutes in Chile on Sunday evening after Nicol won the opener in the Falklands.
The pair is due to play their third match at the Willoughby Squash Club in Sydney at 4pm local time on Tuesday (16th) before they head to Kuala Lumpur for the Asian leg. From there it will be on to Cairo and then London before they complete the Challenge in New York on Saturday.
“We had a lot of people turn out to watch us in Santiago and to see that enthusiasm for squash was fantastic. It definitely staved off the tiredness for a bit,” said Garner after the match. “I always knew that the South American stage was going to great and I wasn’t disappointed. We’re very excited about Sydney now. The city hosted one of the greatest Olympic Games ever and Australians love sport so much. It’s the perfect place for us to play.”
As well as highlighting squash’s 2020 Olympic Bid, the Xodus 7 Continent Challenge is fundraising for two causes: The LV= SOS Kit Aid Scheme and Natasha’s Steps, a trust set up help young squash player Natasha Drake who is recovering from an idiopathic bleed on her brain.