Five PwC athletes compete in London Olympic and Paralympic Games

Five PwC athletes compete in London Olympic and Paralympic Games

Five PwC people competed in the world's biggest sporting event.

The PwC network is home to three people who qualified for the London Olympic Games and two people who represented their country at the London Paralympic Games. They are:

Jenna Hansen

PwC New Zealand: sailing

Jenna is one of 12 sailors who represented New Zealand at the 2012 London Olympic Games. With the New Zealand firm since 2007, she is an associate in the Financial Assurance practice.

Says Jenna: "The day that we were announced in the New Zealand Olympic Team will always be a special day. There were feelings of relief, honour, anxiety and pure happiness.

“The highlight for me was to compete on the world stage, knowing I had given 100% in my preparations for the event. It was a real thrill to be actually racing in the event that we had been talking about for four years.”

Caitriona Jennings

PwC Ireland: marathon running

Caitriona is one of three marathon runners who represented Ireland at the 2012 London Olympic Games. With the Irish firm since 2001, Caitriona is a senior manager in the financial services tax practice.

Says Caitriona: "When I heard the news that I got through, I was really relieved initially as it was an anxious wait between achieving the qualifying standard and being selected. But overall it was a feeling of enormous happiness that, as clichéd as it sounds, a life-long dream had come true.

“The encouragement from the crowds was phenomenal. It is difficult to find words to describe the incredible support I received, not only from my family, friends and colleagues who had travelled to London, but from the British public in general. I was literally moved to tears as I ran down the Mall for the last time. I doubt if I will ever experience anything quite like that again.”

Iain Mackay

PwC UK: hockey

Iain secured a place on the Great Britain hockey squad. He joined the UK firm in 2009 straight from university and is an associate in the referred accounting practice.

Says Iain: "The support I have received from PwC has been great. Since my first international game, I have been able to gradually reduce my working time: first from five to three days a week and then to two days a week. PwC has also allowed me to move from the London to the Reading office so I could take part in all our hockey training sessions. When my sporting career ends, I'd like to fully focus on a career in business and being able to do both now will give me an advantage later.

“Playing in front of 20,000 people who cheer you on is truly amazing! They made it very special. The hockey field was located inside the Olympic village – not outside the village like in the Beijing, Athens and Sydney Olympic Games. This made the atmosphere in London really unusual."

Shimpei Oikawa and Reo Fujimoto

PwC Japan: wheelchair basketball

Shimpei was the assistant coach of Japan's national wheelchair basketball team taking part in the London Paralympic Games. His PwC colleague and fellow player – Reo Fujimoto –joined him to represent Japan at the Games.

Shimpei is living proof that when you work hard and don't give up, anything is possible. The senior associate with PwC's Japan firm battled against cancer as a teenager and lost a limb – but he didn't let this stop him achieving his dreams.

Says Shimpei: "When I was 16 years old, I developed cancer on my knee (Osteosarcoma). The cancer spread to my lungs and I was hospitalised for five years. I almost died; it was a life and death situation. Eventually, my right leg had to be amputated. That's why I got into this great sport of wheelchair basketball.

“The opening ceremony was truly impressive and unforgettable. About 80,000 spectators and members of the Royal Family, including the Queen, watched the show at the Paralympic Stadium. Entering the stadium and waving to such huge crowds left me lost for words. That was a scene that made everything in my life positive.”