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Surrey batsman embarks upon end of season fundraising drive.
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Surrey man and England international Mark Stoneman is the latest big name to be confirmed to take part in the Three Peaks Challenge in aid of the Professional Cricketers’ Trust and Tom Maynard Trust this October.
With just two weeks to go until the fundraising challenge, ‘Rocky’ is encouraging as many people as he can to donate to the two very worthy causes.
The Cricketers’ Trust gives unconditional support to PCA members and their immediate families when they need it most, whether that’s by way of emotional counselling, medical assistance or provision of specialist equipment, amongst other things.
The Tom Maynard Trust guides young people through the nascent stages of their sporting careers, educating them to avoid the potential pitfalls of life as a professional sportsman or woman.
The Cricketers’ Trust spoke to Stoneman about what the two causes mean to him, and what he is doing to secure as many donations as possible.
- How are you feeling about taking on the Three Peaks Challenge?
- I’m really looking forward to it. Obviously it’s for two great causes and the Cricketers’ Trust in particular is something that’s a huge part of our lives as professional cricketers. Having the Trust there for the support and guidance should you ever need it is really quite comforting. You see the work that they do for people who have needed that help and it’s just something that I really wanted to contribute towards.
- And what about the Tom Maynard Trust?
- Obviously the charity was set up in memory of our friend Tom and it’s helped to create so many opportunities and a pathway forward for young people. I know that there are a lot of young cricketers who have benefitted from the work that the Tom Maynard Trust has done over in Spain, for example, with their training camps. It’s another fantastic charity to be able to support.
- What were your motivations for the walk? Did someone persuade you or did you just see it as something you wanted to get involved with?
- When my son arrived last winter, unfortunately he was born with a heart condition which required two surgeries. In the end, we didn’t actually need to call upon the Trust, but knowing that I had someone there to support me in those difficult times was very comforting.
- Earlier this year, when word was getting around about the Three Peaks Challenge, I saw the video detailing everything that Tom Smith at Gloucester has gone through and decided that I really wanted to be a part of this and support the Trust in all the great work that they do. They’re always there for those guys who need extra care or support.
- Have you got a fundraising target?
- I’ve set a target of £1,500. I’ve currently raised about £800 after speaking to the lads here and doing a nice fundraising evening at Wimbledon Cricket Club during their end of season dinner last week. I auctioned off a few tickets for the Surrey v Middlesex T20 next year, as well as a couple of bottles of champagne – just simple stuff like that. It was really, really generous of the guys down at Wimbledon to let me do that.
- Hopefully I’ll get a few more donations over the next couple of weeks and we’ll be able to encourage a few people to donate as we tick a couple of the peaks off.
- What are your fundraising plans going forward?
- I’m just going to try and squeeze every drop that I can out of the people that I know and hopefully a few strangers will see the videos, realise what it’s all about and contribute via the online JustGiving page.
- What are you most looking forward to about the challenge itself?
- Completing it, to be honest. Hopefully we’ll get some nice weather but if the conditions are against us that could be a challenge. Meeting some new people and doing something a bit different will obviously be great fun. When you’re a professional cricketer you tend to recognise faces but you don’t get to know the actual people behind them. Raising money for two fantastic causes is definitely going to help us form that bond.
- Any names in particular you’re looking forward to meeting?
- Graham Gooch is an absolute legend and he’s done some fantastic charity work in the past few years, so rubbing shoulders with people like him for a worthy cause will be great.
- Have you got any celebrations planned for after the challenge?
- It’ll probably be a long train ride back up to Newcastle but we’ll definitely have a couple of celebratory beers. October is always the month to enjoy as a cricketer since we get back to work in November so I’m really looking forward to what the next few weeks hold!
Both the Cricketers’ Trust and Tom Maynard Trust urge PCA members and the general public alike to donate generously to those taking on the Three Peaks Challenge.
Follow @ThreePeaks2019 on Twitter for all the latest updates.