Date: Friday February 8, 2019 at 8:40am
Devon based entrepreneur and Royal Navy veteran, James
O’Malley, 47, will lead the LMAX Exchange Everest Rugby Challenge in April this
year, and preparations are ramping up, with training weekends across Wales,
Scotland, and France.
James, together with a team of
30 challengers – (made up of ex-professional rugby players, business people and charity
workers), will be tested to the max, not just to trek across treacherous
terrain in the toughest conditions, but to attempt two Guinness world
record-breaking feats of playing a full contact rugby match, and tag rugby
match, at the highest altitude – just above Advance Base Camp on Everest. The
matches will aim to break the record set by the Steve Prescott Foundation at
5,752 metres up Kilimanjaro in 2015.
Teams will be captained by a
clutch of rugby stars including Ollie Phillips, former IRB Sevens World Player
of the Year, Shane Williams, Wales' leading try-scorer, England Women legend
Tamara Taylor and 60-cap Test hooker Lee Mears.
Each of the 30 challengers has
been set a funding target of £10,000, to be used by Wooden Spoon to help young
people with disabilities and facing disadvantage in the UK and Ireland.
James is particularly driven to
help the charity as his company Fusion Community Initiatives delivers
team-building projects with social impact globally,– partnering companies with
local communities to create accessible recreation areas, sensory gardens,
outside classrooms… all for schools and children’s hospices in need. (As
seen on this clip here).
James’s own young nephew Harvey
suffers with cerebral palsy and so making a difference to children like Harvey,
is very close to his heart.
So when he climbs to 6,500m to
play the highest-ever game of rugby above Advanced Base Camp just below the
North Ridge in just over two months, this will be the motivation he will
"There’s already some
great camaraderie in the group, helped by coming together for group training
sessions across the UK – and we’re going to need it. It's going to be an
amazing experience but it's also going to be really tough. We're going to need
to dig deep and know we've got a strong team around us."
Fusion Community Initiatives is
a Devon based, award-winning CSR company specialising in high-performance team
building through ethical Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives. The
company comprises a strong team of ex-military personnel, all of whom use
real-time operational leadership skills to create highly effective programmes.
For more information and to support the LMAX Exchange
Everest Rugby Challenge to help change the lives of children and young people
with disabilities and facing disadvantage across the UK and Ireland - visit everestrugby.org.uk #everestrugby