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Former England bowler Alan Igglesden to tackle 5km challenge for Professional Cricketers’ Trust |  Cricket News


Alan Igglesden played the first of his three tests for England in the 1989 Ashes

Former England and Kent bowler Alan Igglesden will continue to defy all odds when he attempts to complete the Professional Cricketers’ Trust 5km challenge later this month.

Almost 22 years after Igglesden was first diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor, the 56-year-old used his story to raise more than £ 300,000 for The Brain Tumor Charity.

Now he plans to join hundreds of Professional Cricket Association members to run, walk, swim, cycle or ride 5km to raise valuable funds for the Trust to support past professional cricketers and current in need. YOU CAN DONATE HERE.

‘Iggy’ and his wife Liz spoke to the Trust about the couple’s remarkable journey and the unfathomable challenges they faced together along the way in a moving video which you can watch here.

A mainstay of Kent’s bowling training between 1986-98, Iggy won 693 career wickets in First Class and List A cricket, eight of which came in his seven appearances for England, including three tests .

In 1999, a year after making his last appearance in Canterbury and at just 34 years old, Iggy suffered a seizure while playing Little Counties Cricket for Berkshire. The giant couturier’s life was turned upside down when an MRI scan revealed an inoperable brain tumor, and Iggy would never play professional cricket again.

But in the years that followed, he received pioneering treatment for his brain tumor, which grew from the size of a cricket ball to the size of a golf ball, recovering as much as he could. teach sport in schools in Kent and Apperley. Bridge near Leeds.

Although Iggy managed to manage his disease for over 10 years, things got worse when the tumor showed signs of growing in 2009 and then again in 2015 and 2016.

The 56-year-old’s health problems have since been made worse by two major strokes in 2018 and 2020, which made it increasingly difficult for Iggy to speak and walk.

Although the severity of the stroke means he is now receiving end-of-life care from Liz, Iggy nonetheless continues to light up every room he enters during these difficult times.

Former England bowler Alan Igglesden to tackle 5km challenge for Professional Cricketers’ Trust |  Cricket News

“You just don’t know when something is going to happen. Having two massive hits while you’ve only prepared for Iggy’s brain tumor takes your life in seconds.

Liz Igglesden

“You just don’t know when these things are going to happen,” Liz said, speaking to the Trust. “None of this has to do with his lifestyle, he had a brain tumor even though he never drank, smoked or behaved badly. He had a brain tumor because he had got a trash hand then he had a stroke then another stroke wait until the lightning strikes twice now because he’s been so unlucky.

“It sounds like all the insurance company ads, but having two massive hits when you’ve only prepared for a brain tumor takes your life in seconds.

“He was stuck in his room all day, every day. When he first came back from the hospital and was pretty still, he just didn’t leave his room.

“That arm that everyone used to clap when they played, so they couldn’t lift it or hold a drink, what does that do to your head?”

Throughout his incredibly difficult journey, Iggy has maintained a positive attitude and a keen sense of humor, and he and his family have also received support from the Professional Cricketers’ Trust to help them overcome the daily challenges they face. now faced.

Former England bowler Alan Igglesden to tackle 5km challenge for Professional Cricketers’ Trust |  Cricket News

Igglesden appealed for LBW as he bowled for Kent in a County Championship game in 1997

The Trust has supported the family with funding over the past few years to allow Liz to look after Iggy full time, and the players’ charity recently provided a stairlift that allows the former player cricket teams to move around more easily.

This last point, as Liz explains, dramatically improved Iggy’s quality of life and, most importantly, significantly lightened the burden on her shoulders.

“Helping him upstairs alone is physically very difficult, and if I wasn’t feeling very well or very strong on a particular day, that meant Iggy couldn’t leave his room. It was that easy.

“I was initially reluctant (to install the stairlift) but can’t believe I didn’t do it sooner. It’s amazing, even though we’ve had all the 0-60mph and Ferrari jokes! Now he can go out and come down we have a great view from our garden and it’s just such a lovely healing place.

“I’ve known Iggy for a long time when he was working at a school so I had no idea about the PCA or the Professional Cricketers’ Trust until we really needed it. anything they could do to help. It feels like family and friends rather than charity.

“People remember you and you feel like they care about you. It’s not pity, it’s attention. It’s reassuring and a burden that bothers you.

“When everything is really tough, the Professional Cricketers’ Trust makes everything more bearable and their support, their sense of family and their help just means we can keep going. We are really very grateful for everything.

Former England bowler Alan Igglesden to tackle 5km challenge for Professional Cricketers’ Trust |  Cricket News

England captain Graham Gooch (center) pictured in June 1993 with (back row) Martin McCague, Martin Bicknell, Alan Igglesden plus (front row) Nasser Hussain, Graham Thorpe, Gooch, Mark Lathwell and Mark Illot

Iggy and Liz welcomed a new daughter, Beth, now seven, into the world in 2013. Beth’s mere presence provided the couple with added motivation to overcome the many obstacles they faced.

“We have a young girl, a girl Iggy didn’t think she could have because of all her treatments,” Liz says. “It was quite a process, but it means we have a life, we don’t just exist and Iggy can really enjoy things.

“She’s seven now and just started realizing daddy was famous. One of the caregivers at the hospital found footage of him playing on YouTube and Beth just couldn’t believe it was. him! She’s very impressed with it all. “

For more information on Iggy’s 5k May Challenge and how you can support the Gamers Charity, visit their # 5ferIggy JustGiving page.

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