13 hour badminton match in support of St Albans toddler with brain tumour

Jamie and Alex.

Jamie and Alex. - Credit: Archant

A 13 hour marathon charity badminton match will be played in support of a St Albans toddler with brain cancer.

Alex with his mum (Anthea), Dad (Dave), and sister (Emelia)

Alex with his mum (Anthea), Dad (Dave), and sister (Emelia) - Credit: Archant

Four-year-old Alex Hobbs was diagnosed with a medulloblastoma in September last year and since then has had to undergo an eight and a half hour surgery, six weeks of radiotherapy, and nine months of chemotherapy.

Although this is the most common type of paediatric brain tumour, treatments are aggressive and can leave children with long-term disabilities.

Alex now has a visual impairment in his left eye and catches infections easily because his immune system is so low.

He is the first UK child to be part of a Europe-wide medical trial called PNET5, funded by The Brain Tumour Charity to find less aggressive but just as effective treatment options.

The toddler is being treated at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH).

His uncle, Jaime Morgan Hitchcock, is participating in a 13 hour non-stop badminton match on August 5 to raise money for The Brain Tumour Charity and GOSH.

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The 33-year-old said: “Alex is a great kid, he has a fantastic spirit, he is fun, happy and lively and to go through all of this at his age is just horrible.

“The hardest part of it all is that he has missed out on over a year of life.”

Jamie took on a similar challenge in 2015: “My wife thinks I am mad to do this again!

“Last time when playing for 12 hours straight, I played 92 matches and covered 32 miles on court.

“However, that was three years ago and now I am older and have two young children, so I don’t have the stamina or hours of training I used to. It’s going to be a gruelling challenge and even tougher than last time.”

Alex’s mum, Anthea Hobbs, added: “We are so proud of Jaime for taking on this crazy challenge and helping us to support such a great cause.

“Jaime has been there supporting our family throughout this heartbreaking time and we all absolutely love him for it. A visit from Uncle J in hospital really makes Alex’s day.”

The Brain Tumour Charity’s director of fund raising, Geraldine Pipping, said they are hugely grateful for his efforts: “Our thoughts are with Alex and his family during this time. We wish him well with his treatment and a speedy recovery.”

To donate, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/dinosaurandoctopus