Jersey-man David Pichler has received the ultimate challenge – to represent Great Britain’s Ultimate Frisbee squad at the World Games in Taiwan in July.
David, who is an employee of KPMG Channel Islands, will be taking time out from his accountancy training to travel with the squad to Kaohsiung, Chinese Taipei, for the World Games which will be held between 16th and 26th July.
The multi disciplinary sports competition takes place every four years and this year, for the first time, GB has qualified as one of the six nations to send a team. The other nations are USA, Canada, Japan, Australia and Taiwan.
David has been playing Ultimate for six-and-a-half years since he first took it up at University and has been involved with the Great Britain team since 2007.
‘I started playing in my first week at university. Within half an hour I was hooked!’ he said.
‘It’s a great game requiring fitness, agility, hand-eye co-ordination and teamwork. The so-called ‘spirit of the game’ is what makes it so appealing. All matches are self refereed so players have to be honest and call their own fouls, out of bounds, travel etc. Everyone has to take responsibility for their teammates actions. And ultimately, throwing a Frisbee is a really satisfying thing to do.’
By the final year of university, David was playing with one of the top club teams in the UK. His GB debut came in 2007 when he was selected to play at the European Championships in Southampton, followed by the World Championships in Vancouver in 2008.
The World Games in Taiwan this summer are being run by the Olympic committee as a testing ground for the Olympics themselves and David is anticipating an intense competition but believes the GB team is capable of winning a medal.
‘It’s the closest I will ever get to being an Olympian and is going to be incredible,’ he said.
‘We will be playing in a 45,000 seater stadium and because of the smaller squad sizes we will be playing against the very best players from each country. The competition will be intense but I believe we are capable of getting a medal.’
‘I am really grateful to my employer KPMG, who has agreed to support my travel costs for the Games in July. Funding is difficult to come by and with Ultimate still being considered a ‘cult’ sport it is not out there in public domain enough to attract major sponsors. Only the very top teams in the UK have been known to receive grants from the National Lottery and local councils so I feel incredibly lucky to have KPMG’s support.’
David is passionate about the sport and set up a local ultimate frisbee club with friends and colleagues earlier this year. He has seen a good regular turn out from people who are interested in learning the sport and is keen to encourage other local people to come along and give it a try.
‘The best way to get started is to get a disc and a few friends together and head to the park or beach to play. With the beaches we have in Jersey I am really surprised it hasn’t taken off already. If you enjoy it and want to take it further come along to one of our club sessions.’
Issued by Laurel Garfield, Image PR, (01534) 723456 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Note to Editors
About KPMG Channel Islands
KPMG Channel Islands Limited is the Channel Islands member firm of KPMG International. It has offices in Guernsey and Jersey employing more than 240 staff. It is a leading auditor of investment funds in the Channel Islands as detailed in the Reuters Fitzrovia survey and has large market shares in the banking and insurance sectors (no independent market share figures available). It also audits many local businesses, including the States owned trading companies.
About KPMG International
KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax and Advisory services. We operate in 144 countries and have 137,000 people working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International, a Swiss cooperative. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.